And welcome to Wednesday 31st December. I'm currently reading Dave Gorman's Googlewhack Adventure book on the train into work at the moment.
So there I am this morning, just sat, in my own little world, not even thinking about collecting 50p's, when I turn the page... to 146.. and read the second paragraph, and - BASTARD! Look ..
There's no escape is there?
Even Dave Gorman is an iPod owner! And you know what? I bloody saw him the other week outside my work entrance, I should have asked him for 50p, shouldn't I? He'd of been game, right ... right? Ah well. Just wanted to get that off my chest.
So at work, I catch up with Andy (#100) and finally have my photo taken with him and he officially hands over his 50p.
I'm amused by the amount of facial hair he appears to have grown recently, until he tells me that it's because he's going to a "Hats & Tash" party later that evening for New Year. A 'tash' as in moustache, and he's had to not shave for the last two weeks to let it grow!
I celebrate the new year myself of course, so later in the evening I find myself heading up to Epsom Downs with some friends, some bottles of champagne, party poppers and a megaphone (don't ask!) to see us into the new year - 2004.
From the top of the downs, you can look right across the whole of London and see all the fireworks that people are letting off into the air, it looks really good. Oh, and I get one of the people that I'm with Philip Newson (104) brother of contributor Sarah (#77) to contribute. And guess what .. he's an iPod owner!
He bought one "As a christmas present to himself" he says, just last week! Grr! And also chooses a new song by The Rasmus called "In the shadows"
The next day (Happy New Year!) is
Thursday January 1st 2004 (that feels really weird to type that '04' ... ), and I bag two more people when some friends call by on the way back home from their new year party.
Ganine (105) and Sheldon Fall (106) pop in for tea and toast, and also to buy some electric heaters off of me that I've got.
"How much do you want for them?" they ask.
"Oh, just 50p each would be fine" I reply. "What!" they say.
And I have to explain, and argue, and argue some more with them as they're really insistent on at least giving me a few more quid for the heaters, but I'm happy to give them away for free, just as long as they just contribute 50p.
In the end we come to a sort of compromise. They give me £10, but I decide that it's £4.50 each for an electric heater, and then a 50p contribution each towards the iPod. And that's why in the picture they're holding up a ten pound note and not a 50p coin!
Then I check my email, and find a very nice chap by the name of Colin Scroggins (107) who has contributed via PayPal.
"Everyone should own one!" he says. Absolutely. And for a song contribution, he recommends that I check out his brothers band site at www.forgetter.com and choose a tune from there. That, Colin, I will do - and thank you!
Finally, there is one more email from Annette Lacey in Boston. We've chatted about tube related stuff before, but she must have spotted my entry of a few days ago (#96) where I talk about being a Spurs supporter... as she supports their local rivals Arsenal! And she says she'll give me 50p, if I put a picture of the Arsenal crest on my website! Aaaagh! This is not an easy thing to do.. trust me! So I'm thinking about it.
Got one last email before the day ended, from a Lee Whittaker (108) via PayPal who appears to be one of the team from Dance Front Door, a comprehensive dance music MP3 site which is definetely worth a look. Thanks guys.
Lee also posted an article online about me and my iPod quest on his site which you can read here. He also points me in the direction of the original site that spoofed the 50 Cent songs to give us "In da pub" and "P.I.N.T". It's at www.liamdon.co.uk , and upon looking there myself discovered that they've done another spoof called "I See Biddies" which had me laughing out loud.
So doesn't the year just fly by? It's now Friday January 2nd and I fire up my inbox this morning when I get up and - woah! I'm deluged with a whole load of people PayPal'ing me 50p's! I think that the Dance Front Door mention has gathered some more momentum.
So here we go then - Big big thanks to Jack Cain (109) from Los Angeles who is a new iPod owner himself, and says that "Everyone should experience owning one of these incredible machines".
Also an iPod owner (a third generation, 10Gb model which is the one I want) is Chad Walton (110) who Paypal'd me all the way from Canada. He also nominated the tune "Two Step" by the Dave Matthews Band, as long as it's the live version. Ok Chad.. it's a deal, and thank you!
Next up in in my inbox is Osmin Byran Suguitan (111), who doesn't nominate a tune, or say where in the world he is, but simply says "Good luck, Dude", so I'd be guessing that he's probably American! Thanks Osmin, very kind of you. (He later emails me back, and yup.. he's from Anaheim, Calafornia - home to Disneyland!)
Terry Vaughn (112) is next, and he's from Derby in the US, (which is cool, because there's a Derby in England, but I didn't know there was one in the States ... I'll probably have people telling me there are loads of them now!) and he also contributed via PayPal. Thank you Terry!
More emails turn up whilst I'm updating this site! Thanks to Robert Brown (113) who just says he is somewhere in 'North London', and I assume he's somewhere near Arsenal because he actually give me £1.00 ! 50p from him, and 50p towards "Putting the Arsenal crest on my website" (114) which it now looks as if I'll have to do ...
So here's a plea to fellow Spurs supporters (there must be some of you out their!), can't one of you contribute 50p on condition that I post the Spurs badge/crest up here as well?
It's later now, I've been out for the afternoon, but it's still Friday January 2nd, and I feel the day needs officially 'separating' in two as it's been quite a long and interesting one, 50p-wise. I had a quite a few emails in my inbox this morning, which I thought was mainly the result of the Dance Front Door plug from yesterday. But as I'm about to go out for the day, I get someone telling me that in fact it's been mentioned on iPodlounge.com - which is arguably the site to visit for iPod users.
So I had a look, and it appears that I've caused quite a healthy debate amonst posters on the forums - which is good! How dull would the world be if we all thought the same and agreed on everything all the time? Very dull, so I think it's good that people came out and gave their opinions.
Why not go and contribute to the discussion yourself?
What I should clear up though is that I do have a job! I'm amused by the people who have said things like "He should get off his lazy arse and work for the money for an iPod". Well, if you read through the pages here, you'll see many references to me saying 'when i was at work today...'. In fact, most of the people in the first 50 are all my work colleagues!
So yes, it really is an audacious bid, experiment, challenge - call it whatever you like - to see if it's possible.
Yes you can give 50p/$1 to charity instead, and if you think that that's a better cause then please go and do that instead. I'm not stopping you doing that. There are loads of charities on the internet which would appreciate a donation.
So my recommended charity to donate to would be Cancer Research. But I'm sure you can think of your own worthy cause.
That's all I'm going to say. If you want to contribute - that's great! If you don't - that's also great! I am not forcing you either way. Okay?
Henrik Nyh (115) was next in my inbox with a PayPal donation - and my first from Sweden! He used his friends account Johanna Ost to contribute which is why it says that on the PayPal screengrab. Thank you Henrik! He later mails me back with a tune nomination, and points me in the direction of his own website: henrik.nyh.se/musik/
I find here that he and his brother have produced a song called 'Snoppen' which I gather is Swedish for 'Penis' !
Then, I looked at my next email, it was from Brian Bartolmai (116) who doesn't say where in the world he is, but did say to "Get some iTunes as well!". Well Brian, I've seen the UK windows version of iTunes on a friends PC, but it would seem that us poor UK users aren't able to download music .. not good huh! Anyone know why?
Also.. more importantly though, is that Brian very generously gave me £5 ($8) which is amazingly generous, but isn't in the 'spirit' of the fun here Brian .. I really want to get 500 people to do this for me, so I can't accept more than 50p a person. So - you guessed it, I sent him back £4.50 straight away!
Christopher Mok (117) was next (Thank you!) who added the comment "I couldn't live without mine! I hope you get it soon!". He didn't nominate a tune though. Don't forget people that you can nominate a tune with your contribution which I will put on the iPod when I get it, and edit the ID3 tag to have your name and contributor number on it as a permament reminder of your kind contribution.
Eric Neff (118) who is also an iPod owner came in next, saying "From an iPod owner to a future owner, good luck. I hope you make it.".
Thank you, Eric, very kind of you. And you get the 'ipod owner' icon to the right here. I still like it, it looks cool.
The next contributors (two pay at the same time) come up with an interesting comment. Kris Nunes e Santos Cruz (119) in Belgium and his three sons Amandio, Remco and Tiago (120) who are collectively contributing me 50p!
He adds the thought - "Let the ten biggest donator names be engraved on your iPod". Which is a nice idea, but I'm getting everyone to give me the same amount of money - 50 pence - but getting something engraved on it is something that hadn't occured to me, but now that I think about it it's a good idea. It's just a matter of what. Either way Kris - thank you for your contribution, it is appreciated. Oh, and he's an iPod owner too! (Natch)
Jean-Claude Arnouil (121) is next in my inbox with a PayPal contribution. And as a bonus it's my first contributor from France. Thank you Jean-Claude, most kind of you .. the country breakdown will appear in the next set of statistics that I do when I get to the 200 contributor mark. He's also another iPod owner - as I am assuming most of the people that have seen the article on iPodlounge are.
Brother of Colin Scroggins (#107) is next in my inbox, so hello and thank you to Ian Scroggins (122) who is one of the men behind Forgetter - a band which this 'quest' has enabled me to discover.
So here's another healthy plug again to check out their website, and listen to some of the beautiful audio clips which you can download. They've got a proper CD/EP coming out in the next few weeks. Turns out that he's another iPod owner as well. Do I have to put the icon on the right? You know what it looks like now! :-) Tell you what, have a picture captured from his band website instead. (I think that's enough plugs now)
Next up is Ken Bloch (123) from Minnesota who sent me this pic of himself with his iPod (in a neat blue coloured jacket I notice), and nominated the tune "2 Ways (The Miss Groovy Remix)" by Money Penny.
Ken's been extremely astute in noticing I'm a Depeche Mode fan because of the T-Shirt that I'm wearing with my mum (#23) and reckons that if I'm a DM fan, that I'll like this track. Cool! Thank you Ken.
It's the next day .. it's the morning of Saturday 3rd January 2004, but to be honest, I'm still catching up with emails sent to me yesterday that I didn't have time to write up here!
There are a few mails from people not sure how much 50 pence is in their currency. Well, you can either use the xe.com currency converter website, or I can tell you that 50 english pence (£0.50 GBP), is $0.89 USD. Although most kind people stateside have been PayPal'ing me a straight $1.00
Someone who have me more than $1.00 is Daniel Claeson (124) who was very kind in giving me $5.00
And yup, you've guessed it .. in the spirit of me wanting to get exactly five-hundred people here, that's too much money, so I've had to PayPal him back $4 ! But thank you for your generosity Daniel. He's also from Sweden, which makes him my second contributor from there today. (See the statistics page to see the breakdown of where contributors hail from in th world).
The last person in this group of 25, is Greg Hinsley (125) who spotted the forum thread on iPodlounge, but isn't yet an iPod owner himself.
He nominated the tune 'Two Month Off', by Underworld. Thank you Greg, and he even pointed me to his webpage so that I could copy this nice picture of him.
Updated! Two months later in March, Greg emails me back telling me that he's now the happy owner of a 20Gb iPod, well done mate! Plus, he too mentions (as a couple of other people have) tha he thinks I should get my iPod engraved as you can with a reminder (Such as "500 Contributors - In da Pod!") as a reminder as to how I got it.
And that's take me to 125 contributors - Click on the 'next' button below to take you to 126 and beyond!
The contributors are listed here in groups of 25 to make the pages easier to manage and read through. Click on any button to jump to that group.
Statistics - We collected a whole bunhc of stats and figures abuot the 50p's collected, here they all are ...
iN Da Pod : The Movie - A video we made about the whole thing
50 pence (iN Da Pod) - Hear Geoff 'rap' in this rather silly 50 cent cover/spoof we made
Gold Coin Contributors - Some people went out of their way to help me get more 50's than just their own
The Tunes Chosen - My favourite music out of all the tunes chosen by the contributors
The iParty - After it was complete, I held an iParty an invited as many contributors along as possible.
The iColour Competion - At the iParty, we had the fun iColour competition - getting people to design their own iPods
What I did with the 50p's - As when I bought the iPod I actually used my debit card