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Saturday, September 20, 2003  
adventures in customers and customer service

aaaaaaaah. Saturday at last. Go for breakfast on the way to do some errands. At the next booth, the customer from Hell. When we first sat down, I thought WWIII was a possibility over there. More than an edge or tone in the voice, if you know what I mean. The man, who is doing all the talking is facing me. His companion never makes a sound as far as I can tell and is the recipient of all the tone. But before you knew it, nothing about the food there was right, and the waitress was making multiple trips with more and more fresh platings of everything. No! I want my homefries on a separate plate. blah blah blah. The manager made two trips there as well. It was a relief when they finally left. No amount of cajoling or apologizing makes someone like that happy. I told the waitress that I recognized that sort of customer right away.

From there we went to a national-chain truck rental place to rent a truck for a couple of hours. No truck, only a van available. Fine. It went downhill from there, as the counter person demanded an "alternate contact phone number" (uh, a what? - someone else's phone number - why? Well, if people didn't break the contract all the time we wouldn't need it.) and the amount of deductible on our auto collision insurance. Ron had gone out for the insurance card. I allowed that if the counter person had told us we needed the insurance card at the beginning Ron would have retrieved it right away. "I didn't know you wouldn't get the collision coverage" was the reply. Ron comes back and is asked for the amount of collision deductible again. At that point Ron grabbed our license, insurance card and credit card from the fellow and said no thank you very much. We've done this lots of times and have never been treated like this or asked for information like this. Bye bye.

Ok, it was U-Haul.

Written at: 2:11:09 PM

Thursday, September 18, 2003  
You may be wondering what edge of the world I dropped off of. Turns out, our cable modem went south, not us, so while doing email and basic internet stuff was manageable, doing other things was too slow. At least, too slow for those accustomed to much faster activity. So what's been happening?

I'm filling in for a co-worker who is out experiencing fatherhood for the first time. Baby Alena was born late Sunday night and it wasn't until today that we saw photos of her. She's a very relaxed and sweet looking baby, and we're very happy for Doug and Emily.

Meanwhile I am plunged into doing something that I'm about 70% certain of, in a time of day that isn't my normal biorhythmic setting. Today for about 20 minutes I thought I was on top of things and even anticipating the next big to-do thing. Alas, a mere email 30 minutes before my scheduled leave time changed all that. Apparently I missed something posted to a web to-do list on Monday and so didn't complete step one on Wednesday and ooops will have to scramble to do the whole thing tomorrow. My boss stayed and helped me do a bit of catch up and another manager chipped in and that was a huge help! 2 or 3 sets of hands and eyes is much more productive than just one set. So tomorrow my day is definitely planned out for me.

On the non-paying-job side, my journal quilts are being sewn by hand to the display sleeve and that's just something that has to happen. Last night I just couldn't so I worked for a little bit on a new project that's just underway.

I wonder how long it takes to re-set one's diurnal settings? After this many years of being a night owl (from day one my Mom would attest) I'm thinking it will take more than two weeks to make me not want to stay up. I can get up in the morning OK, and I'm reasonably with it (pass the coffee please) but by the time the work day is over I'm done. And that's just not a longterm possibility for me.

Written at: 8:14:14 PM

Tuesday, September 16, 2003  
Folks, in the grand scheme of things this is a small rant. It's proportional to the actual size of the problem that some of you have, or think you have.

I've come here tonight to advise you that there is no cause for

  • whining
  • bitterness
  • rudeness
  • sulleness
  • grudges
  • vengeful behavior
  • etc
just because some bit of new technology, nay, newer technology than the stuff you own has been released. Not only is that sort of behavior unbecoming, but it's plain stupid.

Technology changes. That's about the only thing you can predict about it. And that change does often go along the lines of "bigger, better, faster."

Now here's the real reason why you shouldn't do any of the above: Just because today something new and improved has come along, it does NOT mean that the stuff you have is bad. Read that again slowly until it makes sense to you. OK, if you're chugging along on something that's say 10 years old, chances are you would benefit from something new and improved. If you bought it a month ago, oh well. It still does the same wonderful stuff that was great when you bought it. I'll wait while you read that last sentence a few times to yourself.

It's the same as it was yesterday. Nope, it's the SAME. So why are you bitter and sullen? Because your friend who didn't have cash three months ago for a new computer has it now and now HIS will be new and improved and yours won't. Well, next time it will be your turn. Maybe. So get over it. Or at least, don't stamp your feet and whine at me. Get over it.

Written at: 11:42:40 PM

Sunday, September 14, 2003  
I had a wonderful yesterday travelling to the Shelburne museum with 6 friends from East Side Quilters and my mother. It's a distance from home but well worth the trip to see 100 wonderful quilts from their collection and some great scenary. For part of the trip the Adirondacks are on one side of the view and the Green Mountains are on the other.

I didn't take a lot of photos and it was too late to tinker with them last night. I put them here There wasn't any point in shooting all the quilts since there's a pretty good catalogue out there (albeit with some mistakes like a photo that's reversed.) They allowed photos but no flash. Enjoy your Sunday!

Written at: 1:20:30 PM

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