Wednesday, January 09, 2008

Because it has been a while since I've posted videos and nothing else...

David Lynch is a funny guy.

While I'm Talking about Excellent Customer Experiences...

Just wanted to share this message from Creative Screenwriting magazine in response to my email.

I sent this:

Hi there-

I am writing to inquire about the status of this order.

I placed it over a month ago and have not received it yet. Any information would be greatly appreciated.



They responded with this:

Hi Robert,

I am very sorry about the late delivery. You have every reason to be
unhappy. So do we. We outsourced DVD fulfillment to a company called
OWD. They failed to see 140+ orders in early December, and blamed
everyone in sight but themselves. We have fired them and are
fulfilling these orders ourselves.

If you do not cancel your order, you will receive (write me if you
don't) a coupon good for $12.97 off another DVD order or off a
subscription to Creative Screenwriting Magazine -- effectively a DVD
for delivery cost or half price on the magazine.

We're trying to get all the DVD's shipped out this week, we've already
begun shipping DVD's out as of Friday.

Take care,


This shows a couple of things:

1) They can write well.
2) They know their customers are mostly writers, a notoriously crabby lot, and can disarm them with not only brevity and charm, but with a discount.
3) If they don't care about you, they are really good at hiding it.

And I didn't even have to be disgruntled.

I got a free Chipotle burrito today.

What happened was I ordered a carnitas (shredded pork) burrito and they didn't have any carnitas ready at the very second I ordered it.

"It will be right out, sir."

"No problem."

"It will be out in 45 seconds."

"Really, no problem."

"It will be out in 30 seconds."

"Oh, come on? You've got it timed out like that? Let's see. GO! 30. 29. 28. 27. 26. 25. 24. 23. 22. 21. 20. 19. 18. 17. 16. 15. 14. 13. 12. 11. 10! 9! 8! 7! 6! 5! 4! 3! 2! 1! WOOHOO! YOU MADE IT! Wow! That was fun. Ok, I want it with pico de gallo, lettuce, cheese, and guacamole which I already know is extra so you don't have to ask. "

"No charge, sir. This one is on us."

"What do you mean, no charge? Here is my credit card."

"No, sir. We were not prepared, so this one is on the house."

"I know it is your policy to refund the money if a customer makes a complaint, but this isn't a complaint."

"I know. It's still on the house. Thank you, sir."

"Wow. Thanks. That's awesome. What ingredient will you be out of tomorrow?"

What can I say? I like books.

A good friend invited my wife and me to Shelfari, a website where you can catalog all of your books, share them with your friends, and review them. It is like a strange mashup between Amazon and Facebook.

Anyway, here is my profile. Most of my books are in storage right now, so this is maybe about 1/10 of my collection. And, yes, I do own that many comics.

Friday, January 04, 2008

Subtle Sign things are Changing

One of the little head games I like to play at restaurants is psychologically evaluating the wait staff when the check comes.

My wife and I have both been in situations where were are the only Caucasian and/or male person at the table and have automatically been handed the check when we weren't the person picking up the check. In large groups, this can lead to a socially awkward situation that can easily be resolved with a simple little, "Hey! Do I look rich to you?" and then hiding in the bathroom until the check magically disappears.

However, when it is just the Missus and myself and the waiter or waitress places the check directly in front of me as opposed to the center of the table, I usually respond with a, "Check it out! We're dining in a male chauvinist restaurant! IN YOUR FACE! IN YOUR FACE! GUYS RULE AND GIRLS DROOL!" Yes, I am at that age where I do not tolerate other people behaving like an eight-year-old, but in myself I deem immaturity as an adorable quirk.

Anyway, we prefer to dine in non-chain, family-owned restaurants, so this me-getting-the-check thing happens with frightening regularity. But, as it happens, this past week one of our regular hand-the-guy-the-check places placed the check gently in the center of the table.

"Wow!" I said. "Um... do you want to get it this time?"

"We have a joint checking account and joint credit card, so it doesn't matter."

"Oh yeah. I forgot. So... you're getting the check, right?"

I think 2008 is going to be a great year.

Because the World Needs More Blogs about Films

While people like my brother have decided to consolidate all of their interests into one place where you can learn about programming, knitting, and sausage making, I am starting off 2008 by fragmenting my web presence.

I've written about films on Too Much Time on My Hands before, but I have decided to create another web log that exists just to hold my thoughts on film. I call this web log Not the Younglings!

While a lot of the film web logs I read (like SpoutBlog) focus on the here and now in film movements, I'll be writing about whatever the heck I want to write about (which more often than not means things that aren't playing in theaters).

Right now, the ideas for this new film blog are a little hazy, but two features I plan on doing throughout 2008 include writing about every movie in my 400+ DVD collection and, in the spirit of The Onion AV Club's My Year of Flops feature, writing about some cinematic One-Star Wonders. The sad truth is that I've secretly been wanting to blog about Boxing Helena for some time now.

Wednesday, January 02, 2008

Another Year, Another Bootleg Mashup Download Album

I love these things.

Plus, it makes me happy to see that Avril Lavigne "Girlfriend" song get mashed up with that Toni Basil 80s staple "Micky". If there was only some way to work Gwen Stefani's "Hollaback Girl" into the song as well. It shouldn't be hard because they are all essentially the same song.