The Airing of Grievances

Before my relatives panic, this post is not the airing of FAMILY grievances, but rather a small collection of annoyances that have been piling up on my desk over the last couple of months awaiting an opportunity to get them posted on the blog.  It occurred to me today that this would be a perfect time to get this done.  And why is this the perfect time… well, in tribute to the classic Seinfeld episode, it’s “Festivus for the Rest of Us”.  Taking the risk this post will make me out to be a heartless, puppy kicking grinch, I begin…

  • To Peoria news stations, stop reporting on the fictitious high unemployment rate the area is supposedly experiencing.  Why do I believe this is a waste of air time?  Well, this opinion is due mainly to one indicator that is almost always a positive side effect of high unemployment – the Service Meter.  High unemployment by definition implies there are multiple applicants for just about every job – especially in the service industry.  This in turn means the employer has a choice when hiring.  For example, an employer, could say, choose an individual that has higher math skills to fill a numbers related opening like a cashier.  Additionally, it could be a tipping point if one applicant is very positive and cheerful for a position that interacts directly with a customer.  But alas, this doesn’t seem to be the case around here.

    Example #1: A few of us went out to lunch at a local restaurant that begins with an A and ends with an S that serves cheap Italian food.  After completing our meals we headed to the lobby area to pay.  A friend ahead of me was joking about the condition of his penny looked (looks like it had been found by a weekend warrior with a metal detector) and was glad he could finally get rid of it.  It occurred to me that I didn’t have a penny meaning my change due would likely result his penny heading to me.  I gave the cashier my $6 for the $5.27 bill.  As soon as she rang it in, a friend behind me gave her two pennies to apply to my payment (jokingly to prevent me from getting the bad penny).  What proceeded stunned us both.  She literally stared at her register tray picking up random coins and looking dumbfounded.  After about 30 seconds my friend told her the change would be 75 cents which was met with “Thanks, I’m just not good at this thing”  I would have laughed if I wasn’t mortified.  Of course, this is the same restaurant that charges more for two half loafs of bread than one whole loaf (trust me, there is a picture of that menu coming in a future blog).

    Example #2: Linda and I went to a Burger King to get a quick bite to eat while shopping in the area.  After struggling to get my order taken (see the hamburger grievance below) we proceeded to wait for our order to be filled.  We waited and waited and waited while they worked on getting the chicken sandwich cooked – note, we were the ONLY people in there.  Meanwhile, they have my hamburger done sitting on the non-heated ready shelf.  Pretty soon the manager grabs up our fries from the heated fry shelf, slaps it on a tray and sticks it up on the non-heated shelf and proceeded to head for the bathroom.  For the next 10 minutes I stood there staring at my cooling fries and hamburger.  Eventually the chicken finishes cooking.  Sure enough the chicken and hamburger are put on the now cold fry tray and handed to us.  Needless to say, we demanded warm fries (note, manager never did come back).

    Example #3: We made a quick run to McDonalds to get something to drink before Linda’s doctor’s appointment.  The drive-thru was pretty busy (maybe 8 cars lined up) so we went inside to make our order (where there was only one party ahead of us).  Our total order was one small hot chocolate and one small Sprite.  I didn’t clock it, but I had to wait over 15 minutes for them to actually make my hot chocolate.  That 15 minutes actually felt more like 30 minutes having to endure their conversations:

    Hit the jump to see the rest of the grievances:

  • “People are complaining about how long things take and there are like 30 cars in the drive-thru and we only have one coffee making machine”  – Does anyone know a McDonald’s parking lot that can handle thirty cars in their lot much less in their drive-thru?  – Is it the customer’s problem if you’re setup is complete inefficient?
    “They should make a reality show about fast food so people know how hard it is, people just don’t understand how hard it is” – I think I need to add this quote to my office wall.
    “Didn’t we rand out of that, we randed out right? (drink station attendant speaking to floor manager).  Floor manager response “We didn’t rand out of anything, we ‘ran’ out of a few things”
  • To brick and mortar merchants, there are only two things that separate you from online retailers – one is the ability to ask a question and two (and in my opinion FAR more important) the ability to cash and carry.  If I cannot find someone on the floor to help me out with a question or it is simple enough to just Google the answer on my cell phone, then it really comes down to one key difference.  Of course, this isn’t possible if there isn’t product on the shelf.  I find the Internet death pill hard to swallow when I’m standing in a store wanting to spend my hard earned money on a product and the shelf is bare above the item code.  Trust me, I understand the delicate balance of inventory, supply chain and sales, but saving money on inventory NEVER replaces a lost sale to a customer.  So, to the Rocky Mountain Chocolate Factory that was completely out of apples at 11:00am four days before Christmas, to [temporarily deleted due to wife’s xmas present], to [temporarily deleted due to wife’s xmas present], I say Hellooooo Amazon.  (here’s a question for our worthless politicians – that would be the ones who have essentially ran this State’s budget into the ground – what justification do you have for wanting tax money in the situation where your local merchants failed at their chance to generate revenue? … I thought so
  • To fast food hamburger joints, when I say I want a HAMBURGER with mustard, ketchup and pickle… don’t ask me if I want cheese on that.  last I looked, that would be a CHEESEBURGER which is not what I asked for.  Sorry, but this is a pet peeve of mine.  I about walked out of the Burger King cited above because I couldn’t get the cashier to understand my order – I would like a hamburger with just mustard and ketchup (left off the pickles this time to help avoid confusion)… as soon as she heard hamburger she spent the rest of my sentence trying to find it on her register – when found she looked up and said “what do you want on it?’  2nd time, “I want a hamburger with mustard and ketchup”… “Do you want cheese?” 3rd time “I want a hamburger with only mustard and ketchup”… “So no cheese but mustard?” – “Yes.. and ketchup”  (clerk head down looking for mustard)  “You want ketchup?”  At this point I looked at Linda and walked away from the register.  Luckily my wife has more patience than I and finished out the order – this only amplified the situation with the cold fries.
  • To the Salvation Army, I do not need your kettles complete with bell ringers or worse carolers in front of multiple stores in an indoor mall.   By the way, here is a question to ponder – what do you think the giving percentage is for those people who are so keen on raising other people’s taxes?
  • Speaking of taxes, to all the .0025%’rs out there who keep filling up media time with their willingness to pay more taxes as an act of hollow support for eliminating tax breaks for others, you are more than welcome to pay more taxes – in fact I highly encourage it.  Why don’t you show us your tax statements from last year and provide an explanation why you took every optional tax credit that shows up on them?  I realize that the way our IRS is set up you can’t just give them money (a ridiculous situation by the way), but you ALWAYS have the option to take less deductions – ALWAYS so keep your petty stroking to yourself.  I’ll spare you the whole Biden “taxes are patriotic” rant because you are all aware of how asinine that statement is by now.
  • To local merchants, No, I do not want your rewards programs.  This especially true if a) you actually have the foolish idea I would “pay” for the opportunity to provide you information for your data warehouse or b) think a man wants to carry around another piece of plastic in his wallet for a insignificant savings over the value gained (and sold) for tracking my purchases.
  • To the two ladies seen at the mall (at different times), your bra is not a good place to hold your cellphone.  I mainly say this to protect the innocent who might have to actually witness you answering a call.
  • To software houses, any game that either I or someone else takes the time to go out and buy that has a DRM solution requiring hours to download on a slow (and capped) Internet service will be put on the ban list – that means you Steam.  Trust me, there are very few games out there worth me getting up at one in the morning to start a download just to update the software that is required to download the patches.  If this annoyance is going to continue it looks like my book list is finally going to get some badly needed attention
  • To FedEx, if my wife pays extra for two day shipping, it is because she NEEDS it in two days.  This means you do not simply return it to the depot because it was starting to get dark and “you know we are busy this time of the year”.  Yes, we know it is busy this time of the year, which brings you revenue for doing what you consider yourself better at doing than others.  So, when will you be sending us the refund for our expedited shipping fee you failed meet?  On a side note, this reminds me to get our UPS driver a xmas gift for his outstanding service throughout the year – without a single complaint on how busy he is this time of year.
  • To SNL, can you let me know when you might have a skit worth watching… you know, one that will make me laugh and doesn’t try to make fun of people’s handicaps?  Until then I’ll just spend 2012 watching your competitors.  Here’s a question, what is the distinction these days between a hate crime and publicly mocking real individuals who are visually impaired or have facial ticks?  … or what would the media do if Palin (for example only) started her lectures making jokes about facial scars?

wow, I feel better already – this Festivus thing might just be the ticket!  now on to the Feats of Strength .. hey, where did everyone go???

Oh, feel free to either counterpoint my grievances in the comments or even add to the list if there are things that are really ticking you off these days… note, I do reserve the right to moderate.

… his small heart grew 3 sizes that day.

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