Archive for Morons and Freaks

Add Pottery Barn to the list of Greedy Corporations

Posted in Scattershot with tags , on 3 January, 09 by MastrN8

This is a letter I recently wrote to Pottery Barn. In it, I explain the situation in detail so I’ll just let you read it. Note: In this post I replaced my real name with my blogger name. Pottery Barn knows me not as MastrN8.

To Whom It May Concern:

My name is MastrN8. I would like to begin by telling whomever reads this that my wife and I adore your company and the merchandise it sells. Although we are just starting out and cannot afford everything we want right now, we do make a habit of buying what we can from Pottery Barn. We also feel that every time we are in the store that the staff is very courteous, genial and prompt. Even throughout the holidays the store in the Promenade Shops at Briargate in Colorado Springs, CO (#731) was well kept and made for a pleasant shopping experience. That was until today.

Today I went into Pottery Barn #731 in the hopes of exacting an even exchange; however, the situation, which I expected to be quick and easy, turned out to be difficult and frankly, painful. I expected to exchange the frame I had for a comparable one, not only in size, but style; since my wife likes them so much I also expected to buy a few more. For Christmas, my wife asked for Pottery Barn’s red grosgrain frames in various sizes; she received a total of six of them. One of the frames, the 5×7, was engraved with “Christmas 2008”. The person that gave her said frame did not see the small line on the box indicating that this phrase was engraved on the frame. When I went to exchange this frame for an un-engraved frame, I walked into a nightmare.

I walked into the store at 2:25 p.m.; I made a note of the time because I had an appointment to keep at three. The first thing I noticed upon entering the store was the lack of employees. No one was minding the register and I waited a full five minutes before a young woman helped me out. I forget her name but she was very courteous and friendly. She had long brown hair and a green shirt on. She said she would be happy to help and after calling around trying to find a SKU # for the “Christmas” frame, she had the unfortunate responsibility of telling me that since I did not have the receipt, I would have to pay an extra $10.97 to make up the difference in price. This was upsetting to me knowing that I would have to pay for a gift. I decided to pay but to also make my disappointment known to the manager. Keep in mind that I entered the store at 2:25.

At 2:41, the manager, Denise, finally showed up to talk to me. Denise was very polite and apologetic but I believe she failed to grasp the point I was trying to make. She explained to me numerous times that even at the height of the season the “plain” frames were still more expensive that the “Christmas” frames. I understand that perfectly. I was trying to explain to her that I found it disappointing that there was such a long wait to be helped. That it was disappointing that I needed to pay for a gift that was given. That it was disappointing that cookie-cutter, big-box, chain retailers cannot be flexible with customers that wish to spend money in their store.

The point I am trying to make in this long-winded letter is this: I am disappointed in Pottery Barn’s handling of this situation. It seems to me that P.B. would rather keep $10.97 than keep a returning customer. The store is tainted to me now. Where I once saw beauty and elegance in a store’s merchandise, I now merely see greed and a yearning to meet the bottom-line at all costs. I don’t blame you; I have read the reports. Williams-Sonoma’s Q3 earnings were dismal at best. To quote your own CEO Howard Lester, “To put this in perspective, company-wide comparable store sales declined from negative 14.0% in August to negative 20.1% in September to negative 27.6% in October.” The Williams-Sonoma family of companies seems to be bleeding money profusely! No wonder Denise didn’t want to lose the ten dollars and ninety-seven cents

If this were my company though, I would be more worried about returning customers that wish to spend money above and beyond a simple exchange, rather than the difference of said exchange. In other words, wouldn’t you rather bend the rules for a loyal customer that wishes to spend more money on the same visit, than just get the difference of the exchange and never see that customer again?

I hope this letter finds the appropriate eyes. I hope that this letter doesn’t get received only to be pushed aside and be replaced by a stock email that details your return and exchange policy. If you think I am disappointed now, wait until you see my response to an automatically generated email. You won’t get rid of me by just handing me a meaningless email chock full of information that I already know. The point here is this: if you wish to achieve record sales and keep the customers you have, treat them as people. Look up from your number reports and bottom-line, and focus on the patrons in your stores. If making a customer happy means a 5 Million dollar bonus to the CEO rather than a 10 million dollar bonus then so be it! I am confident that the rest of my middle to upper middle class brothers and sisters will tell you the same.

I know there are some circumstances in which you simply cannot budge on policy, however, I implore you to take these situations case by case! You have lost a customer that once wished to furnish his house in your wares. While the staff was kind and genial, they were inattentive to their customer’s needs and steadfast in keeping every cent that they could get, rather than keeping the customer. In the current economic environment I wish you the best of luck and hope that you survive these conditions treating your patrons the way you do.

Sincerely,
MastrN8

Now, in this letter I may sound like a bitter consumer, but dammit, we deserve better! Do you honestly think that corps. like Williams-Sonoma actully give a crap about stuff like this? Hell no! Consumers are the ones that should be naming football stadiums! Consumers are the ones that one Nacsars and pay the driver’s salaries! consumers are the ones that put millions and millions of dollars in the pockets of CEOs! To these corporations it is us, the consumer, that keep them in business, not the other way around! CEOs are always stingy with raises, bonuses, and employee deserved perks, yet they are the first to boast that their company has reached some new height as far as profitability. Where does all that excess money go? Into the bank accounts of those CEOs, my friends. But who am I to complain? That is the American way, Go Capitalism!

Aliens? Really?

Posted in Scattershot with tags , , , , , , , , on 14 October, 08 by MastrN8

Aliens are coming! No, I’m serious, they’re here! What the hell ever. I’m really sick of this crap. For those of you that haven’t heard, there have been many reports floating around for almost a year now about October 14th being a pivotal day among conspiracy theorists and it all began with Blossom.

No, I’m not talking about the ugly early nineties sit-com chick with the hot friend. There is an Aussie woman out there named Blossom Goodchild. She is a self-proclaimed alien liaison that wishes to spread the message that an alien ship 2000 miles in diameter is going to settle itself over the state of Alabama, which, correct me if I’m wrong, is smaller than 2000 miles, for three days. If these “reports” are true then this ship belonging to none other than the “Federation of Light” should appear in our skies today. Don’t worry I thought they were from Star Trek at first as well. I wish I were joking. Google it. It’s on youtube and several websites and blogs.

How, do you ask, did I, the rational, logical, and ever-cynical master of critical thinking come across this “astounding prophecy”? The answer, my friend, is boredom. I have never subscribed to any of this nonsense myself, but I do love to watch and listen to the non-stop parade of delusion that exists among this sub-culture of conspiracy theorists. For me, it is pure entertainment to listen to all of these crazy ideas from a small bloodline controlling the world’s governments, to the pyramids being designed and built by extraterrestrials. These people believe in the things they say so blindly and so steadfastly that I have to tip my hat to them. Is that what you’re going to stick with? Really? Then more power to you. It is reminiscentof the completely devout religious leaders that proclaimed armageddon and apocalypse as Y2K approached. I just sat back and watched as the deluded tried to backpedal and squirm theirway into making it look like they were right…in a way. Come on. You kidding me? You aren’t right when you say that the world is going to end and then claim that what you really prophesized was 9/11. Don’t tell me that you just misinterpreted the message, you suffered from a hind-sight bias. 

So here we are again, on the day that the Federation is due to show, and no news of anything in our skies that is 2000 miles wide. I am pretty sure it would make CNN. I have no doubt that in days, if not hours, there will not be a retraction of said prophecy, but some magical, convoluted, and sad explanation of why either non-believers like myself cannot see what is so clear to those that do believe, or why the aliens decided against coming at all. These theorists say that they are so against indoctrinated governments that control day-to-day actions but what they fail to realize is that these theories that they come up with are as old as time and we’ve seen them before. It’s called religion! Religion, the oldest form of government indoctrinated in us a sense of faith and exiled or cast down those that questioned and reasoned things out logically. Whether you see a pattern in a tortilla that resembles Jesus, or you take a picture of the moon and see monuments left from ancient civilizations, it all boils down to one thing. Fear.

The point I’m trying to make is that people don’t want to be alone. Being alone is scary. So how do we compensate? We invent things that make us more comfortable and better able to deal with that fear. A belief in God, especially a belief that God is with us all the time, is a perfect example. Instead of using religion this way, some people find comfort believing that beings exist out there that are going through the same trials and tribulations as us, only 4 billion light-years away. And so be it, do what you will. The only thing to remember is to not push your beliefs on others, which, I must say, the alien conspiracists are much better at than the religious folk. Since religion cannot present any blurry, doctored-up, photo-shop images, they are left little choice.  

So, Alabamans, as you stare into the sky tonight, remember, whether you believe or not, the aliens probably exist on some other plane of existence; or they may only appear to those that have certain peaks on their brainwaves; or perhaps they decided that earthlings are still in their intellectual infancy and aren’t prepared to witness they’re greatness; in any case, don’t be too disappointed, after all you are not alone. The catholic church has used these same excuses for people that witness “miracles”.

I, for one, intend to stay tuned to the blogs and youtube videos and enjoy the vast train wreck of disillusionment pile up. It may be funny to me, but I still have that one tear making its way down my cheek knowing how many hopes and dreams are destroyed by the advent of reality.

Bless you all and never give up hope of first contact.

Hounddog banned? Chalk another one up to ignorant retards!

Posted in Scattershot with tags , , , , on 23 September, 08 by MastrN8

I just saw this on imdb.com, it sickens me. The link will be at the bottom of this post. I just read that Hounddog, Dakota Fanning’s new movie, has been pulled from over 5,000 AMC theaters nationwide. The cause for this action? Certain family organizations raised hell about a particular scene in the movie that depicts Fanning being raped. Now I don’t want to ever think about a nine-year-old being raped, let alone see it, however, is it fair that a very small population of people is allowed to control what the rest of the country can or cannot see? According to WENN, “Officials at Concerned Women For America are leading the charge to boycott the movie…”. Does anyone else find this appalling? The article goes on to say that the great state of North Carolina has investigated the claims that the scene constitutes “sexual activity” of a minor and found that no laws have been broken. The director has a great quote in the article, saying that it is sad that people that haven’t even seen the movie are willing to immediately speak out against it.

I’ll let you decide for yourselves but it really aggravates me not only that people are so violently against art (no matter how distasteful they find it) whenever it breaches an area that they are uncomfortable with, but to also automatically dismiss something outright at the mere mention of something that you find disagreeable. If you don’t think you’ll like it, don’t fucking watch it, but don’t take that right away from others! That’s what terrorists want to do. The Germans, Russians, Chinese, and the Al Qaeda all want, or have wanted, to control what their citizens see, think, and feel based on their narrow views of what they feel is or isn’t appropriate. This country has fought too many wars for us to bow down to those that feel something is bad for America based on what they have inferred, not even seen, and deemed to be inappropriate.

Shame on you Concerned Women of America for not letting the public decide for themselves what is or isn’t appropriate. I have not seen the film myself, thanks to you, so it very well might be a piece of garbage, however without the chance to formulate my own opinion, I might as well live in 1930’s Germany. Shame on you as well AMC for bowing down to those that do not stand for the American ideal of freedom of speech. By letting them win you have succumbed to a terrorist attack and let the few dictate what the many should be allowed to do for themselves.

Censorship sucks. What will you take away next? Who are you to decide what’s good?

http://www.imdb.com/news/ns0000002/#ni0571515

Personally, not being much of a Fanning fan, I didn’t really care to see this movie. In light of current events however, I’d like nothing better than to watch it. Thanks CWA! Wish I could find one of your picket lines to cross!

A Wacky Weekend with the In-Laws

Posted in Scattershot with tags , , on 22 September, 08 by MastrN8
This past weekend the wife and I gathered our junk, loaded the Explorer, and headed on down to the in-law’s house in order to participate in their annual garage sale. I freakin’ hated it. Don’t get me wrong, I love my in-laws and consider myself lucky for being related to such great people, however, I am constantly looking for an excuse to not be a part of this disgusting ritual known as the garage/yard sale.

I have always hated them. Yard sales I mean. The thought of forsaking what always turns out to be an entire weekend, gathering, tagging, sorting, displaying, haggling, and eventually throwing away junk that I have harbored for years makes me want to vomit blood whilst being impaled rectally with the fat end of a bowling pin. Too graphic? Sorry, but that description will give a very minute inkling of what I would rather do on a Saturday afternoon rather than bartering with the general public. I am of the philosophy that if I haven’t used something for six months or more, I probably won’t ever use it again. Seems like a winning attitude for a yard sale gatherer huh? Hang on, I would rather donate or destroy those things than let strangers pick through it. Regardless of the fact that the wife and I made about $400, I have to ask myself, was it worth it? Really? I contemplate and contemplate but I always come up with the same answer: HELL NO! I would have rather paid twenty bucks on a two hour trip to the dump than waste 16 hours making sure that no one stole my wife’s grandfather’s big brass hanging key-holder shaped like, you guessed it, a goddamn skeleton key!

Now, I may be extremely judgemental, however, I noticed that for the most part the people that shop these low-rent flea markets are genial, laid back, good solid citizens. You can’t run into too many snobs that are willing to pay a quarter for 25-year-old wool socks. That just isn’t in the cards. However, every one “shopper” in twenty is flat-out disgusting. The kind of person whose smell lingers, in the open air mind you, for about half an hour after having left. These are the ones that you hope aren’t looking to buy a chair for fear of having the next “shopper” gag as they sit down. They are also the ones that haggle over nickels and dimes. If something is marked for two dollars, then they want it for one. If something is marked for twenty dollars, they want it for one. They are the primary reason that I’d just rather take everything to the dump. At least that way I still get the smell without the aggravation of repeating the words, “the price is marked, dude”; or “No, I will not go any lower”; or “I’ll throw in this 10-year-old bar of soap if you please promise me that you’ll use it by combining it with water, in a ritual that I like to call ‘taking a shower’, now, get outta my face hippie”.

Typical "shopper" this past weekend!

Typical "shopper" this past weekend!

Long way down….

Posted in Scattershot with tags , on 10 September, 08 by MastrN8

I know I’ve posted already but this is too good to keep to myself. I cracked up at this story because of the extreme opposite of how we view postal workers that are, to quote the article: “overtaxed” by their duties. Normally we see postal stress manifest itself into a nut job with an affinity for heavy-duty firepower……. But not this guy!  Enjoy!

http://www.reuters.com/article/oddlyEnoughNews/idUSL946086520080909?feedType=RSS&feedName=oddlyEnoughNews&rpc=69

Oh yeah, one more thing, I wanted to share this pic I got online. Many of you have seen it on Obama’s ruthless smear campain ads of Johnny boy. I thought it was priceless! I swear if Ol’ GW were seated when this pic was taken, Johnny would be in a fetal position, sucking his thumb fast asleep! Enjoy….s’more!

 

Kisses, N8

The grind is freaking frustrating!

Posted in Circadian Events, Scattershot with tags , , , on 10 September, 08 by MastrN8

In my last post I told the non-existent public of my recent enrollment into a new school. As you know, I have had a hard time adjusting to the immense differences between the two schools. This new school’s policies, administration, etc., pisses me off partly because I’m not used to their rules, and also because I feel like they treat the student population as if we were in high school. Now I mean this not in the context of the functioning day-to-day policies, not in the coursework, which you will soon see.

This semester seems to be my toughest so far. This is a double-edged sword. I feel sufficiently challenged, yet over-whelmed with the coursework. I just had my first test of the semester yesterday which I feel I failed miserably. The prof. said he’d grade on a curve, so I hope that everyone else did even worse than I feel I did. That last sentence was horribly written. I apologize. Let’s move on. I have to have an informative speech ready to give on tuesday next, just after a Bio test on monday. My psych prof. has also announced that my ten-minute presentation on States of Conciousness will be given on 14 Oct., holy poop. On top of it all, I am going to a ball game this Sunday when I should be prepping my speech. I can’t cancel however, I’ve had these tix since X-mas. Oh well, I deal.

So what else can I whine about? Mothing comes to mind, right now but stay tuned.

The super collider was fired up today. I’m as excited as one can be about this without geeking out to the point of playing Magic the card game. I was watching CNN this morning and the focus wasn’t, “Hey look at what a global scientific and profoundly monumental acheivement for the world of knowledge this is!”, it was more, “Hey look what ignorant retards think will happen! A Youtube video of a blackhole swallowing the planet!”. Are you fucking kidding me?  I had a teacher say that he heard one physicist say that they will make a black hole so microscopic that it will last one-trillionth of a second. The chances of it swallowing the earth is 1 to 10 to the 64th power.

Let’s put it this way, there is a  

1 to 10,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000

chance that what idiots think will happen, will happen. When given that answer though, a physicist must still say, “yes, there is a chance that the ignorant are correct.” Theere is a better chance that one person will win the lottery every drawing for the next fifty years. There is a better chance that if you set a pitcher of water on a level table and leave it alone that all of the waterwill levitate into the middle of the pitcher and hang there in a ball while gravity remains the same. There is a better chance that O.J. Simpson was framed after all and didn’t hoodwink the legal system. There is a better chance of the pope saying something like, just kidding folks, we made up Jesus, sorry!

In closing, the world is ignorant, doesn’t want the facts, nor do they want to do the tedious research. It seems that the most common trait amongst the human population, is the knee-jerk reaction. They hear something they don’t understand and instead of learning more about it in order to understand before passing judgement, they shutdown and say “I don’t know what you are talking about, but I sure as hell don’t want you to do it! I’m not listening! La la la la la la!” The same goes for stem-cell research and gay marital rights (and yes, they are rights regardless of what the catholic church says). 

I realize I’ve just come out of the cynical closet, not to mention throw my hat into the crowded political ring, yet this shouldn’t shock those of you few who really know me.

Until next time my imaginary readers!