Friday, October 12, 2007


You may have noticed a recurring theme here: a ranting and railing against crap we are willingly spoon fed through our TV sets. And the astounding thing, to me, is that so few people object to it. It’s infinitely easier to blindly accept what we’re told than to even attempt to think for ourselves.

I'm sure you've seen that ad for the Byproducts-on-a-Bun chain showing a quadruple cheeseburger with bacon and tomato that looks to be equivalent to the height of a six-year-old boy and the seductive voiceover assures us is “piled high” with goodies? Sheep that we are, we race, salivating in anticipation, to our nearest Byproducts-on-a-Bun store and order one.

And what do we get? Instead of the wonderous tower of mouthwatering deliciousness we just saw on TV, we’re handed something that could easily be slipped under a closed door. But of the 34 people standing in line in front of you and the 34 people standing in line behind you, each and every one of whom orders the same thing, exactly how many complain that they have been screwed? How many even realize it? The only thing “piled high” is the bull***t that dragged us in in the first place.

If I am served something in a restaurant that is not what I ordered or the way I ordered it, I will send it back without hesitation. If the service I receive is shoddy, I ask to speak to the manager, which is just what I did at a Perkins Restaurant last time I was on a visit to Mayo. I went in for breakfast. I was seated and sat. For ten minutes. No coffee, no water, no menu. Sat. The waitress passed by with one of those little push-sweepers picking up crumbs from the aisle. I sat. Finally, she brought a menu--no coffee, no water--and then disappeared again. The next time she came by, I asked to speak to the manager, and did. She was, of course, very apologetic and said the breakfast was on Perkins. I explained to her that while it was very kind of her, I did not want the breakfast to be on Perkins. I wanted breakfast to be less than an all-day adventure.

As I always explain to the manager…and I have spoken to a number of them…I direct customer complaint is far better for all concerned, including the manager, than the cutomer's simply walking out and never coming back. Though again, sheep that we are, most people will go back, and no one will have learned a thing.

When I am kept on hold for an hour and a half, being reminded every 30 seconds that “We are experiencing heavier than normal traffic. Your call is very important to us. Please stay on the line and a service representitive will be with you shortly” when I do get a service representative, I explain the reason for my call and then ask to speak to a supervisor.

Some of my dear friends really hate going anywhere with me because I refuse to simply shut up and ignore an obvious wrong. These incidents do not occur frequently, and I do not go out of my way to find fault with anyone. But when I find it, you can bet your bottom dollar I report it.

There was a time when businesses were there for the convenience of their customers. A few still are. But increasingly customers are there at the convenience of the business, and 99.5 out of 100 people simply accept it. It’s wrong, and I’ll be damned if I will go along with it. We deserve what we accept.

Our politicians tell us lie after lie after lie after lie, and we nod with wide-eyed innocence and take every mispronounced word and mangled sentence as gospel, and when election time comes around those of us who bother to vote at all make sure exactly those same people are returned to office. It is to weep.

But I’m out of space, so will close for now. Thank you again for putting up with me.

New entries are posted every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday. Please come back.

No comments: