Skip to content

Monthly Archives: July 2008

I guess I’m just a Hick


I find myself saying:”I am not calling there because it takes me straight to India!”.

Yep, I have morphed into a redneck hick who REFUSES to talk to “them forners” in Bangalore.

Here’s the scene:

I am trying to purchase something from Company A, but have to do it through a Company B’s website that represents them (No, I am not going crazy, just need to keep it incognito while I talk to the big dogs from A & B, who happen to be in the good ol’ USA (who knew??) to get this resolved). Company B is huge, represents alot, and has a website that does not work. Yeppers, I put in all my info, but it does not want to take my money. Did it four times, then decided to call Tech Support to see what the @#$%@ is going on. Even tried on the MAC and the PC!!! After 1 hour on hold the first time, and again the second time, I calmly put the down the phone, took a deep breathe, and called Customer Service.

“Hello, ttttttttthhhhhhhhheeeeeeeeezzzzzzzzzzzz eeeeeeeeezzzzzzzz Raayyychel. How caaaaaaaaannnnn eye heeeeeeeeeeeeelllllp you?”

Rachel my ass. I am in India. Crap, but I have to do this.

So I explain to “Rachel” what is going on. We go through the process again, just incase I am one of the stupid Americans. Nope, still does not work.

Ok, Rachel can send me the necessary forms via email, so I can print them out and fax them in. Yippeee! I hang up and wait for my email. My email has all the info I could ever want on Company A, but not the ONE form I really need. Now it is 7pm and everyone had gone home. And it is Friday.

I wait until Monday, call again. This time “Vincent” says he will send me the form I need. I get the email, and it is the same friggin’ email Rachel sent me on Friday. Read your damn prompt list Vincent!!! I need something else!!!

I call again, and now I am “itty bit” pissed off. I explain to Dick (that is what I will call him), and he transfers me to “Michelle” at the desk designated to Company A. Hallejulah!! She puts me on hold, pulls up my stuff, and tells me she has to MAIL me the forms, that will take 7-10 business days. I ask if they are mailing it from Bangalore?

I send my concern via email to Customer Service, and Customer Relations. This morning, receive another “canned” response email from Company B recommending I use their online system to purchase and complete my transaction.

AARRGGHH! Now you did it, you peckerheads!

I decided that I am done dealing with India and emailed the corporate offices of Company A & B here in the U.S. Will post more of that nice email when this is done. Guess, what, I got a call from Seattle and New York this morning.

I worked in Lost & Found at an international airport for years. You know, I was the nice young lady you screamed at because the bag with all your clothes and your toothbrush was in New York, and you were leaving Frankfurt in the morning for a 10 day tour of 12 countries in Europe?? Or when the airline sent Lassie, your furry 3rd child to Frankfurt, Kentucky instead of Frankfurt, GERMANY? I learned these rules during my years of diverting anger:
1. Always let the customer talk, rant, etc, and get all the info, even if it is repeated several times in a loud voice.
2. Never EVER act like you don’t know what you are doing, and ALWAYS get an answer. Got a fast talker? Get to the point. Someone emotional? Talk about your cat, chickens, goat, or whatever else is fuzzy…..
3. Always treat them like they were your Grandma, and do what you need to do to take care of the problem.
Even though I am a bit of a hot head, I was damn good at this job. Even made some friends who brought me back goodies when they flew back home….

Heike to India: I KNOW you are reading a script and don’t know what the hell I am saying. I know your name is not Rachel, Vincent, Michelle, or DICK. I know they train you on “Americans”, and what you are supposed to say to soothe us. I did the same damn training myself, and all I can say is that your trainers are letting you down! Another first rule: When someone calls you, they are probably already pissed off. I think our companies need to bring their call centers back home to Lucille in the good ol’ USA……

Yes, I am a little redneck pion, but I am a pion with a computer and point to make.

P.P.S. I love y’all with smooches! I want to send you my book and make you laugh. I would love for you to BUY one, but now you can WIN your very own copy! Just sign up for FeedBlitz updates in the little index to your right. You will automatically entered every month (yeah, I know.), drawings will be held on the 30th or 31st.

I guess I’m just a Hick


I find myself saying:”I am not calling there because it takes me straight to India!”.

Yep, I have morphed into a redneck hick who REFUSES to talk to “them forners” in Bangalore.

Here’s the scene:

I am trying to purchase something from Company A, but have to do it through a Company B’s website that represents them (No, I am not going crazy, just need to keep it incognito while I talk to the big dogs from A & B, who happen to be in the good ol’ USA (who knew??) to get this resolved). Company B is huge, represents alot, and has a website that does not work. Yeppers, I put in all my info, but it does not want to take my money. Did it four times, then decided to call Tech Support to see what the @#$%@ is going on. Even tried on the MAC and the PC!!! After 1 hour on hold the first time, and again the second time, I calmly put the down the phone, took a deep breathe, and called Customer Service.

“Hello, ttttttttthhhhhhhhheeeeeeeeezzzzzzzzzzzz eeeeeeeeezzzzzzzz Raayyychel. How caaaaaaaaannnnn eye heeeeeeeeeeeeelllllp you?”

Rachel my ass. I am in India. Crap, but I have to do this.

So I explain to “Rachel” what is going on. We go through the process again, just incase I am one of the stupid Americans. Nope, still does not work.

Ok, Rachel can send me the necessary forms via email, so I can print them out and fax them in. Yippeee! I hang up and wait for my email. My email has all the info I could ever want on Company A, but not the ONE form I really need. Now it is 7pm and everyone had gone home. And it is Friday.

I wait until Monday, call again. This time “Vincent” says he will send me the form I need. I get the email, and it is the same friggin’ email Rachel sent me on Friday. Read your damn prompt list Vincent!!! I need something else!!!

I call again, and now I am “itty bit” pissed off. I explain to Dick (that is what I will call him), and he transfers me to “Michelle” at the desk designated to Company A. Hallejulah!! She puts me on hold, pulls up my stuff, and tells me she has to MAIL me the forms, that will take 7-10 business days. I ask if they are mailing it from Bangalore?

I send my concern via email to Customer Service, and Customer Relations. This morning, receive another “canned” response email from Company B recommending I use their online system to purchase and complete my transaction.

AARRGGHH! Now you did it, you peckerheads!

I decided that I am done dealing with India and emailed the corporate offices of Company A & B here in the U.S. Will post more of that nice email when this is done. Guess, what, I got a call from Seattle and New York this morning.

I worked in Lost & Found at an international airport for years. You know, I was the nice young lady you screamed at because the bag with all your clothes and your toothbrush was in New York, and you were leaving Frankfurt in the morning for a 10 day tour of 12 countries in Europe?? Or when the airline sent Lassie, your furry 3rd child to Frankfurt, Kentucky instead of Frankfurt, GERMANY? I learned these rules during my years of diverting anger:
1. Always let the customer talk, rant, etc, and get all the info, even if it is repeated several times in a loud voice.
2. Never EVER act like you don’t know what you are doing, and ALWAYS get an answer. Got a fast talker? Get to the point. Someone emotional? Talk about your cat, chickens, goat, or whatever else is fuzzy…..
3. Always treat them like they were your Grandma, and do what you need to do to take care of the problem.
Even though I am a bit of a hot head, I was damn good at this job. Even made some friends who brought me back goodies when they flew back home….

Heike to India: I KNOW you are reading a script and don’t know what the hell I am saying. I know your name is not Rachel, Vincent, Michelle, or DICK. I know they train you on “Americans”, and what you are supposed to say to soothe us. I did the same damn training myself, and all I can say is that your trainers are letting you down! Another first rule: When someone calls you, they are probably already pissed off. I think our companies need to bring their call centers back home to Lucille in the good ol’ USA……

Yes, I am a little redneck pion, but I am a pion with a computer and point to make.

P.P.S. I love y’all with smooches! I want to send you my book and make you laugh. I would love for you to BUY one, but now you can WIN your very own copy! Just sign up for FeedBlitz updates in the little index to your right. You will automatically entered every month (yeah, I know.), drawings will be held on the 30th or 31st.

Good Ghosts

One of the reasons I have stayed in stinky SackofTomatoes (Sacramento) so long is that it is only 1.5 hours away from San Francisco. This city makes my heart beat faster every time we drive over the bridge and I get the first glimpse of the magic. It is truely a beautiful and magical city, with so much character and good “vibes” it makes me want to burst with happiness whenever we are there.

Really :). If you know me, you know it is my My Place of Worship, and regularly My Place of Escape from Housecleaning. Last week, we drove down to the city to see the Frida Kahlo exhibit at SFMOMA. Talk about an excited Heike! She is one of my favorite artists. Not only do I love her work, she is also my soul sister, as we both had the exact same body cast and I feel a bond with her. Like I told my son as we are standing before one of her very graphic pictures: “She is painting her pain and tears in pictures. Mama had many of the same pains, so I understand her pictures and see them as expressive, not scary.” What a woman of opinions & passion (Frida & I).

When we are in San Francisco, we so often drive through the Presidio. Much of it is like a ghost town, vacant. I love, love the Presidio, and may offer my first born for one of the Officer Quarters that overlook the Bay. Every time we drive by, I dream of someone stopping me and saying: “YOU! You belong here, here is a key to Building #7, you must move in immediately! Yes, Sir!”. I am always sad to see these beautiful buildings waste away to nothingness, empty instead of filled with energy (I am a building empath :)..they speak to me.) So last week, we drive through the Presidio so I can get my fix, and I see construction, but no signs.

Tonight I get an email from Disney ( I have no idea why..) “updating” me on the construction of the Disney Family Museum at the PRESIDIO!! I am thinking: “They are building a Presidio at Disneyworld? How odd.” But NO, they are building the museum in the Presidio!! Yippee! Check it out. You know, for this I have to love Walt Disney. They are building a museum and education site, and are preserving these wonderful baracks. My Papa used to get tears in his eyes when he talked about the Presidio, I am sure she he looking down and loving it too.

They are finding artifacts in the dirt as they are updating the old buildings to withstand earthquakes. I expect some ghosts will be stirred as they work :), and I cannot wait to wander the halls myself when they are finished…..

P.P.S. I love y’all with smooches! I want to send you my book and make you laugh. I would love for you to BUY one, but now you can WIN your very own copy! Just sign up for FeedBlitz updates in the little index to your right. You will automatically entered every month (yeah, I know.), drawings will be held on the 30th or 31st.

Good Ghosts

One of the reasons I have stayed in stinky SackofTomatoes (Sacramento) so long is that it is only 1.5 hours away from San Francisco. This city makes my heart beat faster every time we drive over the bridge and I get the first glimpse of the magic. It is truely a beautiful and magical city, with so much character and good “vibes” it makes me want to burst with happiness whenever we are there.

Really :). If you know me, you know it is my My Place of Worship, and regularly My Place of Escape from Housecleaning. Last week, we drove down to the city to see the Frida Kahlo exhibit at SFMOMA. Talk about an excited Heike! She is one of my favorite artists. Not only do I love her work, she is also my soul sister, as we both had the exact same body cast and I feel a bond with her. Like I told my son as we are standing before one of her very graphic pictures: “She is painting her pain and tears in pictures. Mama had many of the same pains, so I understand her pictures and see them as expressive, not scary.” What a woman of opinions & passion (Frida & I).

When we are in San Francisco, we so often drive through the Presidio. Much of it is like a ghost town, vacant. I love, love the Presidio, and may offer my first born for one of the Officer Quarters that overlook the Bay. Every time we drive by, I dream of someone stopping me and saying: “YOU! You belong here, here is a key to Building #7, you must move in immediately! Yes, Sir!”. I am always sad to see these beautiful buildings waste away to nothingness, empty instead of filled with energy (I am a building empath :)..they speak to me.) So last week, we drive through the Presidio so I can get my fix, and I see construction, but no signs.

Tonight I get an email from Disney ( I have no idea why..) “updating” me on the construction of the Disney Family Museum at the PRESIDIO!! I am thinking: “They are building a Presidio at Disneyworld? How odd.” But NO, they are building the museum in the Presidio!! Yippee! Check it out. You know, for this I have to love Walt Disney. They are building a museum and education site, and are preserving these wonderful baracks. My Papa used to get tears in his eyes when he talked about the Presidio, I am sure she he looking down and loving it too.

They are finding artifacts in the dirt as they are updating the old buildings to withstand earthquakes. I expect some ghosts will be stirred as they work :), and I cannot wait to wander the halls myself when they are finished…..

P.P.S. I love y’all with smooches! I want to send you my book and make you laugh. I would love for you to BUY one, but now you can WIN your very own copy! Just sign up for FeedBlitz updates in the little index to your right. You will automatically entered every month (yeah, I know.), drawings will be held on the 30th or 31st.

“I got an A!! And an Ipod!!”

When I read this article about a possible Bill 1709 being passed that encourages schools to give students rewards for getting good test scores, I about blew a gasket.

I HATE when instructors or teachers try to bribe my kids with “stuff” or rewards. We don’t believe in bribes. Rewards as a gift, yes. Dangling a “reward Carrot” to make the kid do their best, no.

What do we teach our kids when they only work for something?
Really, my reward for working hard in school was getting a good grade. Period.

I already balked at “Show up for STAR testing, and get a xxx ticket”. We home shool and use a public charter school; one of our responsibilities is to STAR test. It is the trade-off for the perks. I was aghast that the charter had to “bribe” parents to bring their children in for an event I thought was mandatory, ethically mandatory, not necessarily legally.

Now there are actually politicians that feel it will be a benefit to bribe, oh excuse me, REWARD students with non-monetary items for giving their best. They are specifying non-monetary, seems someone already tried cash bribes and the kids got cocky…

Now that is setting a good example, oui?

** Click here to view print in the image above.

“I got an A!! And an Ipod!!”

When I read this article about a possible Bill 1709 being passed that encourages schools to give students rewards for getting good test scores, I about blew a gasket.

I HATE when instructors or teachers try to bribe my kids with “stuff” or rewards. We don’t believe in bribes. Rewards as a gift, yes. Dangling a “reward Carrot” to make the kid do their best, no.

What do we teach our kids when they only work for something?
Really, my reward for working hard in school was getting a good grade. Period.

I already balked at “Show up for STAR testing, and get a xxx ticket”. We home shool and use a public charter school; one of our responsibilities is to STAR test. It is the trade-off for the perks. I was aghast that the charter had to “bribe” parents to bring their children in for an event I thought was mandatory, ethically mandatory, not necessarily legally.

Now there are actually politicians that feel it will be a benefit to bribe, oh excuse me, REWARD students with non-monetary items for giving their best. They are specifying non-monetary, seems someone already tried cash bribes and the kids got cocky…

Now that is setting a good example, oui?

** Click here to view print in the image above.

The Gypsy in me….in Goddess form

I have always been drawn to Gypsy lore, and fascinated by these magical nomads. Imagine how thrilled I was to take part in the EAST Team challenge: “What does the word Gypsy conjure up for you?”.

It brought this spicy Goddess to life, with the protective “eye” on her back :). Please take a moment to peruse the fabulous entries my fellow artists made,all hand-made and unique, and vote for your favorite! :). Details…

The EarthPath Artisans Street Team (EAST) is having a Gypsy Design Challenge! Team members have taken their interpretation of what the word “Gypsy” conjures up for them, and created new pieces in a variety of media.

The purpose of this challenge is not to win prizes or compete with each other; rather, it’s a way to build team camaraderie and inspire us to explore new themes and stretch our creative muscles. And for the winner, it means a little extra attention from an adoring public! Winners will be posted on the blog and on Etsy.

So stop by the EAST Challenge page on Flickr http://www.flickr.com/groups/earthpathchallenge
to see pictures of the entries, and then go vote at the EAST blog
http://earthpathartisans.blogspot.com
You can also see many of the entries in the members’ shops by visiting the team shop’s favorite items page.
http://earthpathartisans.etsy.com

Voting ends July 21st.
I’ll see you there!

The Gypsy in me….in Goddess form

I have always been drawn to Gypsy lore, and fascinated by these magical nomads. Imagine how thrilled I was to take part in the EAST Team challenge: “What does the word Gypsy conjure up for you?”.

It brought this spicy Goddess to life, with the protective “eye” on her back :). Please take a moment to peruse the fabulous entries my fellow artists made,all hand-made and unique, and vote for your favorite! :). Details…

The EarthPath Artisans Street Team (EAST) is having a Gypsy Design Challenge! Team members have taken their interpretation of what the word “Gypsy” conjures up for them, and created new pieces in a variety of media.

The purpose of this challenge is not to win prizes or compete with each other; rather, it’s a way to build team camaraderie and inspire us to explore new themes and stretch our creative muscles. And for the winner, it means a little extra attention from an adoring public! Winners will be posted on the blog and on Etsy.

So stop by the EAST Challenge page on Flickr http://www.flickr.com/groups/earthpathchallenge
to see pictures of the entries, and then go vote at the EAST blog
http://earthpathartisans.blogspot.com
You can also see many of the entries in the members’ shops by visiting the team shop’s favorite items page.
http://earthpathartisans.etsy.com

Voting ends July 21st.
I’ll see you there!

Cable, be gone!

A few months ago, I prepared my deposition.

I listed all the pros and cons, made my budget prognosis, and listed suggestions for alternative activities.

I wanted to cancel our cable TV. Seriously, we watch 6 channels of the 100+, the rest are trash. So why can’t I just choose and pay for the ones we watch??

🙂

After many months of discussions and contemplating, we received a bill that was almost $30 more than the usual already too high bill because we were no longer under contract. Hallejulah! It was a sign.

So we have been officially cable free for ONE WEEK. We are surviving, really. Actually, it has not only cut down on my little TV addict, Heike Jr. #2, watching junk, it has also completely eliminated arguments between myself and Mr. Heike about what show on CourtTV is even remotely appropriate for children.

I do miss my HGTV and FoodChannel, but I will survive (I can always watch Paula on the internet), and we signed up with NetFlix where I can finally catch up on my Chick Flicks!

Otherwise, it is all good. Who knows, in February, instead of getting an HD box, we may just defy “them” totally, and go (gasp!!) TV-less???

P.P.S. I love y’all with smooches! I want to send you my book and make you laugh. I would love for you to BUY one, but now you can WIN your very own copy! Just sign up for FeedBlitz updates in the little index to your right. You will automatically entered every month (yeah, I know.), drawings will be held on the 30th or 31st.

Cable, be gone!

A few months ago, I prepared my deposition.

I listed all the pros and cons, made my budget prognosis, and listed suggestions for alternative activities.

I wanted to cancel our cable TV. Seriously, we watch 6 channels of the 100+, the rest are trash. So why can’t I just choose and pay for the ones we watch??

🙂

After many months of discussions and contemplating, we received a bill that was almost $30 more than the usual already too high bill because we were no longer under contract. Hallejulah! It was a sign.

So we have been officially cable free for ONE WEEK. We are surviving, really. Actually, it has not only cut down on my little TV addict, Heike Jr. #2, watching junk, it has also completely eliminated arguments between myself and Mr. Heike about what show on CourtTV is even remotely appropriate for children.

I do miss my HGTV and FoodChannel, but I will survive (I can always watch Paula on the internet), and we signed up with NetFlix where I can finally catch up on my Chick Flicks!

Otherwise, it is all good. Who knows, in February, instead of getting an HD box, we may just defy “them” totally, and go (gasp!!) TV-less???

P.P.S. I love y’all with smooches! I want to send you my book and make you laugh. I would love for you to BUY one, but now you can WIN your very own copy! Just sign up for FeedBlitz updates in the little index to your right. You will automatically entered every month (yeah, I know.), drawings will be held on the 30th or 31st.