The Fat Lady is Singing

 Sorry for the inconvenience, but if you’d like to comment, please click on the post title…I’m in the process of changing themes…

Correct me if I’m wrong, but I believe I heard the fat lady sing tonight. You know. Right when Bill and his Patriots lost.

Such a bummer. Trick.

Even more of a bummer because the MoH was in the running for quite the payout from his suicide football pool for the season.

I sort of told him that he needed to pay attention to the whole karma thing.

But it was a tad difficult since those of us in Paradise don’t think too much of Eli Manning and his superior attitude.

Maybe the outcome was just the lesser of two evils.

Like I said.

Cheaters never prosper, Bill.

I did notice he changed his sweatshirt, though.

I say it was a bad move on his part to wear that red thing.

Early celebration of game and all.

Okay, so next sports stop is March Madness.

I can’t wait.


Best Buy: I’m their poster sucker.

Clearly I’ve uploaded a new version of WordPress and well…I have a mess to clean up now. At least I won’t be bored this weekend, huh?

There is simply nothing quite like waking up on a Friday, looking forward to actually eating something before 1pm and screaming at the latest supervisor on the phone with Best Buy. But I’m not going to bore you with the sordid details because I’ve recovered from my searing anger, am no longer shaking, and have managed to pull myself up knowing that sometimes, telling myself that I should have more patience simply does not work. I ran out, okay?

Best Buy Smile #1

I opened a book my mother-in-law gave me a few years ago called Simple Abundance. It’s one of those hefty tomes that is somewhat of a day book with a page designated for each day of the year. January 11th’s entry for thought is entitled, “Is it Recession or Depression?” It begins with some words from Hellen Keller: “No pessimist ever discovered the secrets of the stars, or sailed to an uncharted land, or opened a new heaven to the human spirit.” The entry then proceeds to inform me that I must put thoughts of lack behind me, but to do that, I must change. I must make a fundamental change — but have to take a deep breath first. I have to learn to be an optimist.


Continue reading “Best Buy: I’m their poster sucker.”

Once upon a time, the customer used to be right.

Ahhh…what a difference a day makes; it allows the nut inside to cool down a bit so stock can be taken of what matters.

Friday dawned as one should when there’s no work and no carpool duty. I got to enjoy my coffee instead of spilling it down the front of my shirt rushing around. I got to scan the newspaper and not learn anything I didn’t already know because I’d heard it on my car radio.

And then I got to drive my car down the hill to finally have it serviced. Finally. I picked up another coffee at a non-Starbucks joint and proceded to walk back up the hill to begin my day. I wasn’t too surprised to figure out that it is possible to walk up an incline that averages about 15 degrees holding a cup of coffee, occasionally taking a sip, and actually look stupid. No one would do that but me. What a dork. But I walked the distance in about 25 minutes and got my exercise in for the day.

And then all hell broke loose.

Since I was in a “take care of business” type of mood, I’d decided to check in with the authorized service provider we were told to use for our television which is just barely into its extended warranty. We’ve had it for exactly three years and purchased the extension through Best Buy where we bought the LG TV.

So let me back up here.

A bright red stripe about 1.5″ wide that extends from the top to the bottom of the left side of the screen appeared the day before Thanksgiving. Of course I got on the LG website to try and trouble shoot thinking that it may not be quite the big deal. I got out the owner’s manual, too, thinking I could learn something there.

Uh. No.

So the pleasant service guy showed up the Tuesday after Thanksgiving after I called AGAIN because they never called back after the first call. That should have been my warning.

The nice service man said that he’d check about whether parts and service OR a replacement television was in order. Honestly, I didn’t care. I just wanted to not have the red stripe on the screen. OR the pinkish, whitish, greyish conglomeration of tech-snow interference that conveniently did its thang while the service guy was here and thank you very much. For twenty minutes it snowed. Pink.

He said he’d call as soon as he got word on how to proceed. And he did, the very next day saying that parts were to be ordered. They’d come from the Right Coast, take about two weeks to get here, they’d come to collect the TV, install the parts, then keep it a couple of days to make sure everything was fine.

Totally groovy. I was feeling sooooooo efficient.

Just to convince you I’m calm, I waited two weeks and two WHOLE days before I called to check and see about the parts since the authorized people hadn’t called me.

The woman who answered the phone is now my mortal enemy. Her not really connected to this planet attitude and cavalier response about “the parts not being ordered yet” sent me completely through the roof. Her annoying, “Ma’am.” interrupting my request for her to repeat the offending information sealed the deal. She blamed the entire thing on Best Buy saying they didn’t have our information in the blah-blah-bla-dee-dah something or other. And she was, I think, a tad offended when I suggested to her that it was blatantly bad business practice to let something sit unresolved. She had no answer when I questioned her about just how long she’d wait before calling us to say that nothing had been done to service our TV after they’d told us it would be taken care of.

She didn’t like me. She really didn’t like me after 10 minutes of listening to me. But I’ll bet her dislike of me doesn’t approach my less than enthusiastic attitude about her prissy self.

So then I called Best Buy. Or should I say I punched in the number and several hundred others until I actually spoke to a human. I’ll spare you the details. But I did end up with a Manager who did tell me that the authorized people were having trouble getting the parts. Okay, so sure. That story was totally close to the crap the authorized chick on the phone told me. Liar. Great. So I asked the Manager when I might expect to get the parts. Sadly, she didn’t have that information. That maybe in 24-48 hours, I might be able to have that information. Mind you — 24-48 hours and two business days are not the same thing. It was Friday for goodness sakes. Puh-leeeeze.

So I called LG who told me that since everybody was pissing around, I should expect, demand, get a replacement TV. Okay, so the guy didn’t exactly say “pissing around,” but still. So I called Best Buy again, and after speaking with a few other people, got Kayla the Manager on the phone who sounded less than cheerful, in fact, quite resigned when she got on the line with,” Hello Kelly” and I told her what LG had told me. Like she really wanted to hear it.

And then I asked to speak to her Supervisor, Amber, who initiated our conversation with a verbal download of the day’s events so I’d know that she knew what she thought I’d expect her to know to be in the know. Yanno?

But all she could tell me is that it looked like the parts had been ordered.

And I told her that although we’ve purchased many, many things from Best Buy over the years, I was done. That had we purchased the TV from Fry’s, the service people would have taken it off the wall for us so that the MoH and I wouldn’t have had to do it. We are just not quite inclined to do those kinds of things. But we managed to pull the fist full of wires and cables far enough out of the wall to allow the TV to sit on the console below it and reattach it to its stand. Very. Scary. And Oh how I just can’t wait to put it back up there if the damn thing ever gets fixed.

Good thing we have muscles. Feh.

The TV ordeal took a couple of hours out of my Friday. But the good thing about it was that I got a lot of housework done while I was on hold which made it easier to put up the Christmas decorations later in the day.

I’m going to wait until the television is fixed (at the rate we’re going it should be sometime in February…) to write my letters commending the employees of Best Buy who know exactly how to say all the right things in the correct fashion. They’re so well trained. It’s too bad that the content of their comments is worthless. I’ll find a pithy way to extend that particular gem of information.

I’m thinking their goal would be to keep me in a state of suspended animation until the extended warranty time is up. Then they won’t have to do anything about the TV. After all, we already got raked over the coals because we purchased ours so long ago they only cost a fraction of what we paid — one quarter the amount we paid, actually.

So heed my warning if you’re headed out to purchase appliances or electronics this holiday season. Ask lots of questions about the warranties and extended warranties. If we hadn’t purchased the extended warranty, we’d be S.O.L. on our TV right now. LG said had it still been on warranty with them, they’ve have replaced it.

Of course we have a nice Sony in the bedroom that’s years older and has never had a single problem.

So happy shopping, guys!

What to do on a Friday. Or not.

Since I officially have a J.O.B. now, I get to brag that I get Fridays off. And since I only work four hours a day the other four weekdays, clearly I’m not taxed here. Actually, I knew that it would be just enough time to throw off my blogging responsibilities. So thanks for your patience as I figure it out. Some of you are gifted in that area and manage to work and blog quite effectively. Show-offs. Or is it that you use that company computer? Only on breaks, right?

So what to do with this Friday and the weekend?

Grousse a bit about DubYah and the ridiculous “bail out” of the home mortgage catastrophe.

  • How nice that yet again, people who KNOWINGLY got themselves into a mess they can’t get out of get to keep their mess, but have someone else pay for it. Can I get in line for that, please? How can anyone not know that they can’t afford something? No. Way. And the lenders and agents who instigated the whole thing to pad their own wallets and then bail when things began to get soft need to be thrown in the slammer. Losers. They threw Martha in the slammer for something miniscule in comparison, and since this mortgage business is affecting the economy, uh, I’m thinking they need to round the crooks up. The whole “bail out” is a scam, anyway. Sort of along the lines of “Tastes Great! Less Filling.” Tastes great!  Less filling! Serve it up anyway, George. You go right ahead. What. Ever.

B*tch about a hike in our medical insurance because I had another birthday; its high cost must not have been quite high enough.

  • Mind you, we’ve only had the insurance since this past spring. If Blue Cross would give up sending stoopid statements on high quality shiny paper printed in lots of purdy colors (that just confirm we’re getting hosed monthly because there are only zeros on the statement), they could probably save a zillion dollars. Then they wouldn’t have to charge me the extra money that is just going out the window because we don’t use it. You can’t exactly USE medical insurance with a deductible that rivals the national debt. Welcome to the land of opportunity. The place where you purchase medical insurance just to prevent the loss of a home in the event of a serious medical condition. Wait. I could maybe swing a deal with the banking and mortgage crooks, then not have to pay. Sure.

Clearly, others understand this is the land of opportunity and the home of the brave.

  • After you rip everyone off, enjoying their hard-earned cash and credit (sans taxes, of course), why not ask for leniency because you want to turn your life around after you’ve had all this fun? *Can I borrow your spoon so I can stick it in my throat and gag?* If the judge believes these two free-loading ass*oles, I have a terrific chunk of land in Paradise that is a veritable rain forest with unlimited water and city politicians who aren’t liars.

Lest this all depress you, we can look forward to the colors the fashion industry has in store for us all next Spring. Um. I can’t wait. Spring ‘08 Colors The MoH just may be interested in a nice trouser in Snorkel Blue and a shirt with French Cuffs in Spring Crocus. Wait. On second thought, maybe one of Buckler’s designer swim suits. The gold lame.

And last but not least — I saw this standing in the grocery line a couple of days ago.

  • A suggestion or two? Tubal Ligation. Condoms. Birth control pills. Strategically positioned stitches. Lobotomy.

But it’s Friday. So I’m going to spruce up my casita and get ready for the weekend. There’s holiday shopping to be done, a tree to be chosen and to decorate, and maybe…just maybe…another performance of yours truly on this Sunday. Don’t hold your breath for it, though.

My follow through sucks right now.

But we’re healthy, damnit.

Teddy Bears and Food Chains

Could someone out there tell me what is wrong with people who have their heads so wrapped up in their religious identities that they can’t behave in a civilized fashion?  It would certainly help me at least begin to try to understand them. Or pretend to try and understand them.  Okay, so maybe not.

I’m not one to judge what people believe and why.  Really.  I notice and move on.  I may question it, think about it, maybe even worry about it or roll my eyes a few times. But that’s all. I completely understand that my purpose on this earth is to be a constructive human, and to raise productive humans.  I don’t point fingers, or get too caught up in others’ day-to-day drama. Blogging doesn’t count.

But once in a while, I wonder why there are people who are so consumed with their beliefs they aren’t satisfied until those beliefs are plastered everywhere forcing everyone else to see and know what they stand for — religiously.  I’m not talking about tree huggers here, okay?

I have trouble understanding when said people consumed with their religious beliefs (read men in Sudan and other places, but especially Sudan for this particular point) that they take to the streets calling for the execution of a woman who allowed her child to name a toy.

Surely this warrants an eye for an eye.  (I’m trying to understand here, okay?)

Surely, they have absolutely nothing better to do with their time after they’ve just finished worshiping than to crowd together acting like complete barbarians for the sake of a man who, if alive, would most likely be horrified to know that what he stood for has been so completely distorted.

When events such as this happen, I try to put myself in the position of the one so rudely offended.  I try to find a similar situation where I (or another as noble and understanding as myself, of course) might be equally offended.  Now the first example that comes to mind is the fact that many families from Spain (or countries that were invaded by Spain when it was obsessed with its religious beliefs and killing those who didn’t agree…) traditionally name their male offspring “Jesus.”  Say “Hay-soos” and you’ve got it.  I have heard someone question whether this is “okay” since fair-skinned individuals who are avid believers in Christianity would never name their male children Jesus.  Never.  But that’s a weak example, isn’t it?  Hmmmm…?  Okay, everyone…to the streets!  Such heinous disrespect!

Do they TRULY believe the British teacher should have to face imprisonment, 40 lashes, deportation, or as the learned masses demand — execution?  Really?  Why might the children not understand that this isn’t appropriate?  Might the families be falling down on their religious responsibilities to educate their children about all the truly important dogma they must adhere to in order to become crazed zealots by the time they’re old enough to join a crowd in the streets to call for revenge by violent means?

You know.

To even the score.

Sure.  That should take care of it.

I know somewhere, there’s a connection to the food chain.  Everything has a place on it.  I’m wondering what religious zealots’ place on the chain is.  What their purpose in life is.  Why entire countries and their governments have gotten it all so horribly wrong.

They must not have enough to read.  Not enough to stimulate their intellectual capacity.  Enough to encourage individuality and creativity.  Constructive inspiration.  Freedom.

It’s challenging for me to not acknowledge my intense reaction when I read about events such as this, or watch segments on the news.  My distaste is extreme, and familiar ability to tolerate missing.

I don’t want to understand their reaction.

I don’t feel like I should have to try.

I’m not comfortable with their actions…

…or them.

They’re dangerous.

Dear Bakersfield Board of Education Members…

NaBloPoMo: I’m on it with a little hop in my step and a “tally-ho” spirit, raring to go. Onward and upward, and all that sort of crap. To quote my sister when she was very young and we had suffered yet another family trip crammed in the back of the blue VW bug, “Are we there yet?” No, dear. Just keep writing…

November 8, 2007

Board of Education Members

Bakersfield City School District

Dear Elected Members of the Board:

I never cease to be amazed that those who choose to sit as members of a school board seem to be obsessed with the most repulsive sort of demagoguery. With respect to this latest example of proof, congratulations.

I do believe that the U.S. Constitution states that “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof” and although you are most assuredly not members of the U.S. Congress, you are, as are we all, governed by that and all other amendments (even though judges enjoy the freedom to interpret them in their own way).

Additionally, the California Education Code, Section 220 states that, “No person shall be subjected to discrimination on the basis of sex, ethnic group identification, race, national origin, religion, color, mental or physical disability, or any actual or perceived characteristic…in any program or activity conducted by an education institution that receives, or benefits from, state financial assistance or enrolls pupils who receive state student financial aid.”

Therefore, your recent decision to place in 2,300 classrooms and other gathering places within your school district posters that read, “In Got We Trust,” is inappropriate on several levels. The fact that you feel you’re “not going to accept the agenda of some radical leftists who want to expunge God from public dialogue,” Mr. Vegas, is beside the point.

What is the point is that not every one chooses to practice your religion, share in your beliefs, or pray to the same god that you do, or pray at all — simply because they do not believe there is an entity to pray to. They are entitled to those beliefs just as you are, whether they are in the majority or not. Or should I say “accepted” majority?

Clearly you think them wrong. That they’re carrying the future of society and its children to hell in a hand basket. One that belongs to “radical leftists.” Perhaps the same “radical leftists” who pay taxes that end up in your school district’s coffers, and with whose funds will be used to pay for the “In God We Trust” posters you will purchase.

It’s a problem.

The kids won’t care because it’s just another adult pissing contest that is very “junior high” in its characteristics. The “in” clique got what they wanted, and in the process has engaged in name-calling of anyone who isn’t on their side. If you don’t think $12,000 worth of posters that will soon become faded wall paper should be in our schools, then you’re un-American.

Because we all know that our beliefs should be plastered on our bumpers, our homes, our classrooms, and on our sleeves. That we’re card-carrying members of the “I Believe” sect and anyone who doesn’t strut it is suspect.

It makes me sick to my stomach. How do these ridiculous humans get elected? Oh, that’s right. They get elected by other humans who aren’t satisfied wanting what they want for their own children; they want it for everyone else’s as well. Because our children must certainly be what’s wrong with society. Damn them heathens. Actually, what they want is to not have to pay for a private, religious based education. They want us to pay for it.

Ah, yes. America. The land of opportunity. You, too can have whatever you want, have someone else pay for it, and then complain about it or send it back after you decided you didn’t want it after all.

In conclusion, you may want to take a look at your district’s budget. This is the time of year when school administrators begin to organize their site finances for the next school year. Since could be losing quite a bit of state and federal funding due to your self-serving actions, you’ll have quite a bit of adjusting to do to make ends meet. And if you don’t lose the money there, then it will most likely go to court costs when someone files suit over your recent edict. But hey! At least you’ll have pretty posters on your walls that no one will notice in a few months.

And just think.  As board members, you only set policy. The educators then have to scramble to clean up your mess.

Now that you’ve had your moment in the sun, perhaps you might focus on whether students are ready for college. Hmmm?


An American tax-payer

Let Freedom Ring

Dear Assurance Plus: Gee, Thanks.

Today is the first day of NaBloPoMo. That means I will be posting every day this month. Um…that isn’t too unusual for me, is it? So why did I join? Why not? Regardless, here we are and I’m ready to go, which must mean I’m a NaBloPoMo-Ho. Or something.

Each day this month, I’ll post a letter to someone whom I believe needs to hear what I have to say. Okay, so I get it that unless they read this, they won’t “hear” it, but still. At least it will get it off my chest, right?

November 1, 2007

Assurance Plus, LLC

3644 E. McDowell Road, Suite 114

Phoenix, AZ 85008

To Whom it May Concern:

I’ve been wanting to contact you for quite some time, but have restrained myself, knowing that if I waited for the end of my year’s contract with you, I’d be able to express myself more articulately without spewing venomous verbiage which you absolutely deserve.

I’ve learned a great deal from my experience with your interesting scam company about how not to invest money like a complete moron when considering a Home-Based Business. I now know that as much as I consider myself to be an optimist, and at times, someone who is willing to take a calculated risk, one might just call me gullible a total loser. I wouldn’t disagree with that conclusion at this point, and I have you to thank for my new found knowledge and intense skepticism regarding anyone who even acts like they’re going to say there’s really such a thing as a free lunch. In fact, I have a list prepared of what I’ve learned from my experience with you, and will take this opportunity to caution everyone else share my conclusions:

  1. I can be an affiliate of Amazon all by myself if I choose. In fact, I believe I am at this point even if I’ve never earned one penny as one of their affiliates. Although I’ve been an avid customer of Amazon for years, I never was interested in doing anything other than purchasing books, so I never considered looking into what being an affiliate involved. I was busy with my own career, and didn’t have time to even wonder. If I hadn’t been conned by your scam, I wouldn’t know what an affiliate was, and that many, many Internet based businesses offer that option to interested parties AT NO CHARGE. So stupid me.
  2. It doesn’t cost $5,000 to build a website and host that site for a year. It doesn’t even come close to that. Especially one as lame as the one you “customized” for me. Bwahahahahahaha….snort. Oh, I forgot. I wasn’t charged $5,000 to build the site and host it. Excuuuuuzzzzzzeeeeeee me. If I remember correctly (I don’t feel like getting out the cheesy notebook you sent which is printed in every font imaginable and how much are you paying how many people to put such a pathetic “resource” together?) Erm…if I remember correctly, the site you built and the hosting would only cost $299. I believe that is quite reasonable. The remainder of the charge was for directing “targeted traffic to my site.” I now know that your method of “driving targeted traffic to my site” is a bunch of shit, and so is your lovely company. If you hadn’t sold me a total scam, I’d never have known any of this. I’m so thankful.
  3. You can only “make money in your sleep” if you’re Warren Buffett. Or Bill Gates. Or Martha Stewart, or Oprah. Okay, so there are some others, but still. I would not be one of those people who make money in my sleep. But like me, lots of people are interested in working from home because they have children, or health issues, or are just fed up with living to work and having it suck the life out of their blood and bones. So I have your slick scam company to thank for confirming what I already knew about not being able to make money in my sleep, and allowing me to do extensive amounts of research after the fact on home-based businesses and free lance jobs. Thanks so much for that opportunity. It comes so rarely in life.
  4. Taking surveys on line is an amazing waste of time, and another scam. It was fun while I was involved in it last winter for a couple of weeks. But all it really did is send you to my doorstep, cause me to accumulate thousands of junk emails, received unwanted products in the mail that I had to call and cancel (which were pretty pricey) and get amazingly clever snail mail about being part of an uber secret sect of humans who have all the secrets for earning unlimited wealth. I did finally get to be a Nielson family and throw my two cents into the pot about what’s on television and whether we actually watch it. So thanks for that. But wait, if the surveys led you to me, then maybe I should be thanking the survey companies…
  5. Putting up stats on the “targeted traffic” can be easily concocted. And amazingly, the stats for said “targeted traffic” just happen to be carefully geared to driving the amount of “targeted traffic” to the site that you said you’d guarantee in a year’s time — about 20 people a day. Woot! Everyone get out your party suits, and get ready to rhumba. You can have some kind of a par-tay with 20 unsuspecting clickers who most likely laughed their asses off when they saw that “portal” to Amazon and thought, “Whose lame idea is this?” when all they really had to do is just go to Amazon. Well, that would be if the visitors indicated in the stats were in fact, real people, instead of someone sitting at a computer and getting paid to click….But I’m sure you weren’t doing that, right? Nah…..So thanks for helping me learn all of that as well.
  6. Being the completely vindictive person that I am, I could have actually used this opportunity after I learned so much, to make something of it. Maybe. But I’d have to be a barracuda to pull that off, and I’m just not wired that way. It did occur to me that if I did try to make something of it, I’d only be making money for you. And because you already had made so much money from stupid me when I simply gave it to you, I felt that you would be satisfied with what you already had. So that sad “portal to my wealth” with “targeted traffic” ready to spend money and who will earn me money even if they don’t spend any money, has just been sitting there for about 10 months now, earning you nothing more.

In conclusion, I’d also like to thank you for giving me back $1,000 when I suggested all of the above to you on the phone that day. It’s only a drop in the bucket, but still, it’s $1,000, and even though it’s my money, and you really didn’t do anything, I’m still grateful.

Good luck to you and your parasitic organization. I hope that locusts swarm in and around your immediate vicinity and that you are plagued with destructive spam and hard drive destroying worms you have success in educating other people sooner than you’ve educated me about how not to make money in my sleep with a home-based business being an affiliate of a company I could be an affiliate of if I wanted without spending money.

I am forever grateful.



p.s. And I have two of my own sites, now, too. So I guess I have you to thank for learning about how to do that, too. Sort of.