I want to love you. I want to be a lifelong fanboy and talk good about your products. But you make it so hard. You just don't get how technology is changing, what the consumer wants and needs, and instead I feel like I'm using a 10 year old product with any updates you make. I have been a fan for 4 years, why do you make me hate you so?
It seems almost monthly I am reminded that customer service is dead. The latest example? Fred Meyer. I don't know how many of you out there have these (I think they're just in Oregon; Kroger is the national brand). But they have this thing called "Fred Meyer Rewards" - where you get a little card that you scan with every purchase. For every dollar you spend, you get 1 point. At the end of the quarter - they send you 1% of your points back in "rewards" in the form of these barcoded cards that are in different dollar denominations. So, after the last quarter ... because it's the only place we shop ... I've got $10, $5, and $3 "rewards."
So last night I run to the store to pick up some coffee and this homeopathic sore throat stuff.
I'm pretty proud of myself, seeing as I have $18 in rewards. Means I don't have to spend any money on this trip, right? Go me. Oh, how wrong I was. Doing the little self-checkout thing ... hand the rewards stuff to the worker, and she scans in the $5 one, and then the $3 one, and then says "you can't use all three of these." I'm obviously perplexed. Not only have I used all my rewards coupons before when shopping there -- but since she scanned them in in this way, I now have to pay $9.98 on my credit card. (Instead of scanning in the $10, then the $5, and having me pay $2.98 on my card.)
I ask, "oh, can I not use all three?"
"No, you can, but you owe $9.98 and this is worth $10, so you have too much."
"Ah, well, it's fine - you guys can keep the two cents - don't worry about it."
"No, we can't do that - you have too much."
Now, I'm at this point annoyed because this is just stupid. But, I figure - fuck it - I'm not in the mood to get in an argument with someone over this. So, I ask, "well, if that's the case, can we use the $10 and the $5 cards - so I only have to spend $2.98 and then I'll just take the $3 card and use it later"?
Wait for it.
"No, we've already scanned them so they're used up."
So, I ask to speak to a manager.
I get the same song and dance to start with. I say that I've been here plenty of times - used all my rewards before, and even have paid for small items with larger rewards and never had this problem. That I'm giving the company 2 cents for free - after having spent thousands of dollars with them just to get these silly reward things in the first place. I also ask if this "policy" is on their card, their website, or these reward card things. Nope. So, I ask again - is there anyway you can just use it? Or do I have to go buy a 25 cent item - and then pay the extra .23 cents with my VISA card (which will probably cost them more in the transaction fee than the item's profit margin)?
Predictably ... she says she can override it.
Why the dog and pony show? You can override it!? What. The. Fuck.
I think the world would be better off if the following took place:
1) There was an add-on for Firefox that kept all spelling errors from ever reaching me. Someone @replies me on Twitter and can't spell a basic word that your browser even tells you is misspelled? Doesn't get to me. Someone responds on AP.net and tlkz lyke thz. I never see it. Seriously. It would save me a lot of time and annoyance.
2) People didn't blame me for the ads on the website. I have zero say over them.
3) People remembered that if they are going to @reply me and insult me - odds are you're going to be responded to with the same hostility. Don't go whine about it and try and take the high-road when you're the one that started the entire thing.
4) People stopped eating at places with horrible commercials. McDonalds and Taco Bell -- you're done right off the bat. Let's move this to all commercials and stop giving shitty places more money.
5) Shhhh ... don't tell anyone in the media: there have been tablets for years. Powerful ones that don't run a phone OS. Seriously. Anyway, I'll be chatting in this thread today.
6) I have nothing to do with ads on the website.
7) And because I need to get it off my chest: THIS.
Anyone else find it weird (or annoying) that there are a select group of members on AP.net that clearly work for blog sites (that see very little traffic) and so they find some way to work into any news post about a new band's album that they have it? It's always some subtle "this album is good" or "this album sucks" sorta comment in a news thread about a new release. We get it. You got the promo. You probably bragged in your blog, twitter, and all over the website you somehow convinced the PR department was worth sending an advance.
If you ever wonder why I have a "short fuse" by the end of the day with users ... it's cause of shit like this. I can be in the best mood, but after reading this sort of stuff for 5+ hours, I'm over even trying to be civil with some people.
Dear World: Jon & Kate are not worth any amount of the time you have put into talking about them or giving them coverage as "breaking news" on CNN. The ridiculous drama is no different than 95% of the married couples in this country ... the only difference is that they were able to make money at it. Stop.
For as long as I can remember people have been complaining about the "pop-punk" label/genre tag being used with bands more "pop" than "punk." Green Day got it. Blink 182 got it. New Found Glory got it. And it hasn't gone away. For one: labels are stupid, we all know this - but we also live/breath/sweat music on a daily basis. They're used to classify an extremely large group of bands into subsets for better discussion (and music discovery) purposes. However, the label itself changes depending on who is talking. If it's a group of 50 year olds, the term "punk" means something different than it does to me and it means something else to 15 year old kids. The term "emo" has evolved - yes, it has. The term pop-punk has evolved. People need to stop assuming their definition of the word is the only one that matters and can be used ... it's a waste of time arguing about what bands can fit under what mantle.
Yes - I call bands like Cartel pop-punk. Yes, all the Decendents fans are going to complain much like the did when Blink182 was called pop-punk. I'm still going to do it. It allows me to speak to a larger group of people and help them find new music. I'm not talking to all of the Automatic 7 fans. I'm talking to the Fall Out Boy fans. Get offended. I don't care.
Because it's been bugging me: I happen to agree with Dustin Kensrue when he says you should give an album time and 10+ listens before coming to final judgment on it ... and personally, I think it's wrong to begin listening to an album one day before you officially "review" it. And, for the record, it has nothing to do with me disagreeing with the content (which I could discuss in great detail), it has to do with me disagreeing with the method. I think music - and the reader - deserves better.
Edit: Thanks for the plug tonsofun! Appreciate the views. Keep proving to everyone that you're one of the big reasons your magazine is all but obsolete. Here's a follow-up post.
Why was Jefree Starr not kicked off Warped Tour? Please explain to me this insane double standard. Someone?! Anyone?! How the hell is this going un-noticed?! He electrocuted someone! Am I the only one amazed and sort of appalled nothing came of this?
I'm gonna be that guy: What is the big deal with this swine flu shit? People are so effing melodramatic whenever the media gets on some "epidemic" kick. Down the oseltamivir or zanamivir and STFU ... if you weren't worried about it yesterday before you'd heard the term, there's no reason for you to start freaking out like a hypochondriac now. Chill and play with google maps.
For the life of me - I can't figure out how to make the sub-pages look right with the new layout. Just letting them stretch looks all out of proportion. Adding an ad on the side makes it look like shit with grey taking up more of the page than content ... erg. The smaller postbits I designed to work with our thinner layout look horrible stretched out. I can't find any inspiration in other sites at the moment. I finally got a homepage I was comfortable with ... and now I want to tear my skin off trying to figure out the rest of the website.
Fuck my OCD. It doesn't feel right at all. I feel like I am looking at a bastardized version of 8 months of work stretched 267 pixels too wide. I am flashing between depression and downright white anger.
I don't want to have to go back to the drawing board on subpages. I spent all last year doing them. I have no idea what I am going to do.
This upsets me. I feel like there should be a bigger public outcry when women return to abusive environments/relationships. I'm all for personal responsibility -- but that doesn't mean people's personal choices and actions aren't stupid as shit. There will be no storybook ending here ... and when the next headline hits, don't expect much beside "I told you so" from me.
So I have an extra room downstairs that's sort of a "living room" type room. Basically nothing in it except a couch, some stuff on the walls, and a bookshelf. The unfortunate thing is that it would be a damn awesome pool table room; however, it's like 3 feet too short on one end. Stupid house.
I want a pool table. I can't think of anything else to do in that room. It's basically never used - and it just chills there ... wishing it could be an office or den. Wishing it was bigger so it could be an amazingly fun game room. But noooo ... instead it's just a sad little wanna be room that currently is good for nothing except showcasing things on the walls. I suppose it feels slightly better than the spare bedroom that is never used - ever. But it's still a stupid, stupid bitch. Grow 3 feet!! GROW!
This is so stupid. Why the fuck are people getting all up in arms over this? He smoked weed. Is this supposed to be some giant fucking deal? Anyone that knows me knows I hate weed and most of the time hate the people that smoke it on a constant basis (for being idiots ... not the weed), but come on.
Was he stupid? Yes. Should this still be an issue? No.
Dude smoked some weed and is still arguably the best athlete this world has ever seen. If he was shooting up heroin or something or ruining his career with drugs ... maybe I'd feel differently. But as it is ... Amy Winehouse deserves 10000x more punishment than Phelps.