Thursday, March 09, 2006

How does the rabbit tell the raisins from his poo?

I'm a big believer that not only is beauty everywhere ("God is in the details" - Ludwig Mies van der Rohe), stupidity is also everywhere ("Cabbage: A familiar kitchen-garden vegetable about as large and wise as a man's head" - Ambrose Bierce). In fact the stupidity is more plentiful, thus putting intelligence as something found deep in the woodwork at times. And since I work in tech support, finding the intelligence can be closer to locating the needle in a haystack. Ironies are all over. Here are a few dumb things encountered in the last 24 hours alone:

• Written in the dust on the back of a moving van: "There's no poop on this, right?"
• I walked into the fuel-and-bolt to get change on my gasoline purchase, and their new someone-walked-in beeper plays the beginning of "Take Me Out To The Ballgame"... in the sound of tubular bells like on a church organ.
The price of petrol going up 14¢ 18¢ in one week at the local gas stations. [edit: went up 4¢ overnight!]
Astro-Logix Glow building toys, which are made just up the highway from me, are no longer in production. (DaMert/Toysmith, consider better marketing. Your products are awesome.)
• Hog Wild Toys now requires a proof of purchase to join their Bender Club because someone found out they give away free stuff. Not so much stupid as it is sad but completely understandable. (And if you want to see my old cubical, see the image that is fourth down in the left column.)
• After the technician had spent two or three minutes explaining that after the customer's replacement PDA arrives and is activated all the email which had been waiting will come to the device, so there is no need to create another mail service account or change anything, the customer asked, "But will I have to set my mail up again?" Twice.
• I've gone through twenty documents found on the internal network about some new stuff I'm supposed to support. 75% of them are targetted to sales, 25% of them are a rewrite of the materials that are given to customers, 0% of them have anything to do with what to do when stuff breaks. And I'm in the breakage-repair (and correcting salesdrone inaccuracies to upset customers) department. Where are the materials used by the people who took these calls before us? No word on that. As my boss put it, we constantly have to reinvent the wheel but truthfully we're better at it.
• When we'd need to ship replacement devices, we'd just select the shipping code and then the option to remove the shipping charge. Screw this!In that previously-mentioned update to our system, they changed the system so that when using the usual option one would have to get permission from a supervisor to remove the shipping charge... but then they also gave a shipping option that is free. The people who made the changes have come up with a chart of when to use the free code, when (what days and what times of day) to use the usual codes and seek permission, when to do this and that, yackity smackity. By some twist, most of the times we're advised to use the codes that require permission are the times supervisors are hard to find. Gee, simple solution here for us, which is what every email not from remote management alludes to: ignore the bus schedule and always use the free shipping option, and the fact is the box is gonna arrive in two days no matter what button we push anyway. Simple solution for the goofs higher up: stop screwing with the tools, people gotta use 'em.
Billy Ocean is playing at a local casino soon. Okay, that's more surprising than stupid, and as he said when the going gets tough, the tough get going... on tour!
• The title line was what I said when the woman in the cube to my left told the woman in the cube to my right she has a rabbit that eats raisins.
• It's remarkable the number of people on my work phone that claim they can't hear me. The headset amplifier is okay, I sound okay on the Quality monitoring (other than my nasal tone, but I was born with it), and my voice is average indoor volume. I've figured it out: some people aren't listening anyway, some have too much background noise and don't seem to consider getting away from it (please don't vacuum or watch NASCAR and call customer service at the same time!), but the majority are using cell phones... therein lies the problem. I don't care if this is the business sector I work in now, cell phones are crap. Since I work with them I know this is a fact. I needed to call my brother-in-law in another city and my wife offered me her cell phone, which has free airtime and his number in the phonebook. I declined and chose to use the landline and a calling card. She asked why, and I said because I'd like to be heard. She got a little defensive and said her phone worked fine, to which I replied, "So why do you have to repeat everything you say on it 3 times? Listen to yourself sometime."
• Of course, more stupid than not hearing is not listening, and dumber than that is expecting to tech a phone that is in use at the time, and dumber still is expecting someone to tech a phone that's not at hand. But somehow I'm used to all of the above, which is also kinda stupid.
It's March 9 and it is snowing.

So if you missed it, here's a quick review of the new TV show Sons & Daughters: I don't know if the show will last, but I laughed my ass off and now have a crush on the neice with braces and glasses and half of the best lines. Bonus points that we got to see what Wojo from Barney Miller looks like nowadays. Some quantity of the dialog was improvised, and that worked nicely in a few scenes. I liked it but plenty of other people who saw previews apparently think it's stupid. :) I haven't checked to see what they thought of it yet, but I will take this show over Desperate Housewives or pretty much anything else on ABC if it continues to be offered.

I didn't see the show you are referring to.
That pic of your Bender toys is cute. Looks like a fun way to waste office time, or take your mind off of those stupid callers.
Uh, will I need to set up my mail again?
I doubt if that lady's rabbit would care if it ate it's poop by mistake.
The work problem you were talking about was so confusing that all I can say is... HUH?
Now, that I have some voice back, I have been talking to my dad about every other day. He's on his cell phone as he drives home from work. We always have interferance troubles & usually get cut off once per conversation. It is anoying! It's even worse if I talk to my parents in their house. Their house is like a vortex for cell phones. I've learned to call them on their home phone, NOT their cell phones.
So, you have a nasally voice, huh? I guess you sound like a male Lily Tomlin operator.
Oh, and one more thing:

Will I need to set up my mail again?
Lily Tomlin's Gertrude: I have been known to say "one ringie-dingie... two ringie dingie..." while I wait for an answer, but I haven't gone so far as to say, "Is this the party to whom I am speaking?"

And yes, for fun I sing The Girl From Ipanema while I'm on hold when there's no hold music, or even when there is. In both English and, when I've been holding too long, Portuguese.

The next TV review will be of the two I Want That! spinoffs on HGTV - IWT:Baths and IWT:Kitchens - which premiered last night. Who do they think they are... Law & Order? CSI?

Half my Benders are at the office, the other half are on the back of my metal front door. Was not aware there was a set of Blue Benders until today... whee!

There are a lot of cell phone vortexes. This is Nature trying to tell us something.

ps - call your Internet provider, because you will have to set your mail up again on their end, as soon as you delete the account off your phone.
That cartoon clip you put a link to in my comments is funny. My hubby got a kick out of it too.

Blogging has been my saving grace. I'm socially outgoing, by nature, but my voice malady has pretty much forced me to retreat. I also love to write, so blogging fulfills that as well as allows me to socialize without actually speaking.
Luckily, my voice is coming back, so I currently have more than a whisper. I look forward to being able to yell if I want to. What a great day that will be!!!!

Nasal or not, be thankful for your voice. I'm sure you don't sound like Fran Drescher. THAT is a nasally voice!
Truly there is a difference between "nasal" and "braying"... hers is braying, and then there's that unnerving laugh.

Great that you can express yourself in any ways possible. Looking forward to your playground voice... :)
Hey, you have a great blog here! I'm definitely going to bookmark you!

I have a cellular phone game site/blog. It pretty much covers cellular phone game related stuff.

Come and check it out if you get time :-)
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