Threadless, Reddit, and Other Social Veterans

It’s time to stock up on t-shirts, and also time for a sale at Threadless. The sale end is due to end at the end of tomorrow (Monday), and the design is “Larry the Fox Doesn’t Feel So Clever Anymore.”

I see that today is the 6th anniversary of my very first Threadless order. Back in 2005 I lived in Boston and had only one kid; now I’m in Bethesda, Maryland, have two kids, and have seen a lot of other changes in those years. So has Threadless, although still has its community rate the submitted shirt designs.

Another social media site so old it can remember when Web 2.0 was a trendy term is Reddit. I see that I’ve been a redditor for 6 years. Mu current favorite subreddit is Breaking Bad, to which members submit links relevant to the excellent TV show of the same name.

The image shows one of my favorite recent submissions. It turns out that the original was sold on Etsy, “the world’s homemade marketplace”, and another older-than-6 social site. By the way, I did search for Breaking Bad t-shirts, and there are some out there, but none of them edged out the shirts I liked at Threadless.

This very blog is currently hosted at, which is run by Automattic, another social web company that passes the rather arbitrary 6-year test. Congratulations to the four above-mentioned veteran firms, and to other who have been around that long: it’s been a long and interesting passage of time.

Like Etsy But…

IMG_3082Another weekend, another Halloween… but I’m getting ahead of my blogging. Last weekend saw the last SoWa open market of 2009. SoWa is a silly term for the south end of Boston’s South End.

It was a lovely sunny October day, we bumped into some friends, we bought some art… The print of dinos reading is by Eric Sturtevant: our home life sometimes resembles the picture.

The two smaller prints are by Chen Reichart, whose blog and Etsy store are called botodesigns. The autumnal print seems to illustrate that we should become a two-Android family soon. Chen and her partner were kind enough to compliment me on the tshirt I was wearing, and to ask where I got it (Threadless, Star Men in Moon’s Milk).

Indeed, the SoWa market is like Threadless, Etsy, and similar web sites come to life, in ways that demonstrate advantages of real life over the web. The market has a good selection of tshirts, crafts, etc. It also has an antique market next door, in a rather wonderful old trolley barn.

The market also provides the chance to meet the artists: that’s face-to-face, the ultimate social medium. On Sunday it had sunshine, halloween candy and other seasonal flavorings. Now, time to post this, and get ready for halloween itself.

Three Meme Post

It’s time to catch up with Threadless and their wondrous wearables. It’s also time to catch up with internet memes.

The image adorns a new Threadless shirt, Three Keyboard Cat Moon, that combines the Three Wolf Moon and Keyboard Cat memes.

That leaves me one meme short of a full post, or at least, one meme short of the promise in the title. Let’s go with Rickrolling, but let’s bring it up to date by mashing it up.

Tale of Two T-Shirt Sales

The big t-shirt news of this particular Monday isn’t the Threadless $3 off for 3 days sale. Neither is it the new shirts available at that site, cool though some of them are (e.g., The Grand Escape).

And it isn’t the 10% off for two weeks sale at T-Shirt Hell. But it is the reason for that sale. The site “where all the bad shirts go” is closing down. I first saw the story at TechCrunch, where Mike Arrington quotes TSH’s Sunshine Megatron’s goodbye.

I started this company in June of 2001, nearly 8 years ago, with the intention of producing the best satirical, the most controversial, the funniest t-shirts on the internet. Generally speaking, I feel I’ve accomplished that and am satisfied with what we’ve put out. I made a shitload of dough along the way. I’ve done cocaine off the better body parts of supermodels. I’ve even raped and killed a mountain panda in the hills of Shaanxi. But these perks are besides the point.

I just don’t feel like dealing with idiots anymore. I’ll give you an example of the kind of misguided morons we deal with on a regular basis at T-Shirt Hell. We released a new shirt a couple weeks ago that says “It’s not gay if you beat them up afterwards”… we’ve been besieged with emails from angry people complaining about the “fact” that the shirt is hate speech or that we’re promoting gay bashing and should take it down immediately.

The Obama image is from TSH, by the way. I hadn’t heard of TSH before today. So I am reminded of the people who, when told about Elvis’ death, remarked that it was a good career move.

Bestee Finalists at Threadless

For someone who tends to mock awards, I tend to post about them a lot. So it is with cognitive dissonance, as well as with pleasure, that I link to the Bestee Award nominees at Threadless.

My vote goes to “Grandpa Cassette” by Zack Finfrock. I like some of the other work at Zack’s site, particularly this strip about the webcomic creative process.

Threadless Again

Threadless t-shirts are for the young and trendy (or whatever the hip word for trendy is these days). But they are not just for such people; I remarked on The Graying of Threadless a few months ago.

I’m following up on this for a couple of reasons. The more recent one is that someone whose age seemed similar to (and may even exceed) my own noticed the shirt I was wearing today, smiled, and said “Threadless.” This was in the Roslindale branch of Staples, which I don’t think is usually regarded as a hipster hangout.

The other reason is a week old. Monday is new release day at Threadless. Today’s batch had its highlights, particularly “Let It Flow!” But last Monday saw one of the best new release days ever (or even evah!) with designs like “The Mississippi Phoenix” and “Small Mammal Flying Machine.” The latter provides the image for this post.

Threadless Sale Extended

The Threadless sale has got even better since I posted about it a week ago. It has been extended through September 7th. And over 100 shirt designs are now only $9.

On the other hand, the sale has got worse. There are a lot of “Sold out” signs against design/size combos. In particular, the $9 shirts seem to be those available in only a few sizes. For example, “Defend the Kingdom” is available only in kid sizes now.

The Graying of Threadless

The Graying of ThreadlessI got my first Threadless t-shirt back in 2005. It was a while before I saw anyone else wearing one. As time went by, I saw more and more people wearing them: usually people in their teens or 20s.

Recently, I’ve started to see Threadless shirts on people like me: parents, and not always particularly young parents. The photo is of a people who’s very much like me, wearing his favorite t-shirt: Patchwork. By the way, I ensured that I am not the oldest wearer of Threadless shirts by buying some for my dad.