Bird breeder's thoughts on whatever…

01-05-17 — January 5, 2017


Happy New Year!

My hopes for the new year are pretty simple and basic.  Winning the lottery would be nice, but I’ll be happy to just muddle on as usual.  A roof over our heads, food in the cupboards, no bill collectors at the door, and a maintenance of the current level of health will be sufficient.  World peace would be nice, but let’s not go nuts.  Our own country is divided in two and if we all can’t get along then I don’t see how we can possibly hope for the entire world to achieve peace.

I’d also love to see a bit more civility this year.  We all have thoughts that are less than pleasant or perhaps the polar opposite of civil, but can we at least return to days of yesteryear and keep them to ourselves?  I blame it on the internet and social media.  Far too easy for someone to just write the first nasty thought that enters their head.  When I was much younger I loved a good argument.  No more.  I bite my tongue a LOT now, because what good does it do to inform someone of their shortcomings?  We all know our own issues already and certainly don’t need to be told or reminded of them.  And if we don’t know, I can almost guarantee that most would prefer to remain in the dark.  So keep the nasty thoughts to yourself, folks, and make the world a little better.

Off my soapbox now and stepping into reality.  As Andy Rooney might have said, ” have you ever noticed how the things that should be simple, aren’t?”

We received a new dehumidifier yesterday to replace the defective unit that had been recalled.  One way the internet can be a very positive thing is that I learned of the ability of our old unit to burst into flames for no apparent reason by reading about it on facebook of all places.  Never mind that I had filled out the registration when we bought the unit and they certainly could have contacted me to let me know of this possible catastrophe waiting to happen had they wanted to.   Anyway, the new unit arrived yesterday and hubby checked it out and got it running and deposited the paperwork by my computer.  So as usual I checked out the registration information and found there was no “or register online” bit but instead there was the card to fill out and mail.  Maybe you trust the mail, but I don’t.  That’s a story that would fill several blogs.  So I find the company through a search and go to their site.  Click on support and find a page to register products. So far, so good.

I filled in the information, including the seven million digit serial number, and clicked submit.  ERROR.  FIRST NAME IS INCORRECT.      Huh????   Hmmm…. maybe the original unit was in hubby’s name (even though I am positive it was not) so I try that.  ERROR.  FIRST NAME IS INCORRECT.    Well, they are incorrect.  I do know my name and I’m pretty sure I spelled it right.

Aha, there is a link to the right where I can email customer service.  Great.  I click on that and find I need to fill out a bunch of crap there.  One of the lines asks for the item type.  Of course dehumidifier is not listed, so I go back to the original form to find out what they classify a dehumidifier as.  Air Conditioners.  OK.  Good to know, and of course it makes sense now that I see it.  Back to the email form.  Finish jumping through their hoops and get to the Message part.  “I’m unable to submit my registration form because it gives me an ‘ERROR: FIRST NAME IS INCORRECT.’  While I might have chosen another name if given the opportunity, I’m pretty sure I entered my correct first name and actually spelled it correctly.  Please advise.”

Chances are pretty good I’ll never be contacted by them.  Since the warranty is only for one year, it probably doesn’t really matter.  The point is, I wasted about twenty minutes on something that should have taken five.

I suspect I’m not alone in preferring to shop for as much as I can online.  Shopping in stores was never something I particularly enjoyed, and as I’ve gotten older it has become far less so.  If I could have the store to myself that might not be the case, but since I don’t see that happening, I like to shop online.  It also gives the ability to find the best deal and find things I probably could never find in a store.  Let’s face it, as much as I love crowds and shopping, if it isn’t at the Walmart fifteen minutes away, then I’m not finding it in real life.  Online shopping is usually pretty good, too.  You see what you want, find the best price, order it and wait for its arrival.  No muss, no fuss.  Shopping for anything you wear has its issues however.

Recently I was awake after midnight and flipping through the channels when I happened upon the Home Shopping Network and they were selling the Deal of the Day or Today’s Special Value – whatever they call it.  Boots.  Women’s winter boots.  Waterproof.  Fur-lined.  Looked good.  And they come in wide.  Hot damn!  No shipping and a special price!  What could be better?  However, being realistic and cheap, I thought, no, I won’t get out of bed and order this, I’ll wait till morning and think it over again.  So in the morning I go to their website and see they still have the blue ones I was eying, and in my size.  Double-check the style with a quick search and find that yes, the price elsewhere really is considerably more.  OK, I order them.

Boots arrived yesterday.  Look good.  I nod to nobody – yes, this was a good choice!   Try on the left boot.  Ahhh.  Nice, furry interior and comfy.  Try on the right boot.  What the hell?  Why is this one pinching my foot?  Why does it hurt to bend my foot – as in WALKING???  Now, I know I have a heck of a time finding comfortable shoes.  I have wide feet, need arch support, there is an ingrown toenail that acts up from time to time… but I know my right foot is not wider than my left!  Not unless it has suddenly ballooned up overnight!  I decide that maybe with wear the offending boot will stretch a bit and be ok.  I wore them inside for a few hours and reluctantly toyed with the idea of sending them back.

They had arrived with free shipping, however, to send them back is $7.95.  Kind of a rip-off, since if they had both been the same width I’d have happily kept them, but I don’t believe HSN really cares what the reason is – though you can be sure I wrote it on the return slip!  They do make it easy to return them, providing you don’t mind the cost.  They give you a return label sheet, with either UPS or USPS, whichever you prefer, and you simply box them back up and put the return label over the original label.  They will deduct the shipping cost from the refund amount.  It irks me to have lost $7.95 on the deal, but I’m trying to justify it as what it would have cost me in gas money had I gone all over searching for boots.  I did say TRY to justify it.

I guess these minor irritations are not going to change just because it’s a new year.

“When you look back over your shoulder
At everything you’ve done
Put the good times in your pocket
Let the bad ones make you strong
Keep chuggin’ along”

                                                 Luke Bryan