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Take That China!
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Sort Yourself Out eBayers
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Give Me Your Voice
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My Way of Losing My Mind is Quite Constructive
I'm A Cilla Black Fan On Bike

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Tuesday, December 14

Extremes of customer service

I have two service providers to deal with today. One of them is a cat boarding kennel - Manor Farm Cattery, whom I had to ring in order to rearrange cat accommodate over the Christmas break. Since we'd paid a deposit and had taken their valuable space over a busy season, I expected them to say something like "We'll keep the deposit and maybe hold you to a percentage of the agreed accommodations". At the very least I didn't expect them to be so amenable and helpful in moving the dates to another busy time of year.

They were simply great - a class act. Well worth using.

On the other side there's another service provider. This provider has failed me in an important way and hasn't been sorting out the issue. I happened to drop into their office on 1st December because I was nearby. Suddenly everything was a priority. The person told me that they would get progress for me by midday on the 3rd. "And I'm promising you" she said. I asked if her previous assurances of getting things sorted out were also a promise. She admitted they had been, but this time she really meant it.

By the following week, nothing had happened. No progress. No apology for doing anything. I sent an email explaining that it was obvious that the deadline had passed and I was looking for an update. No reply.

Over the weekend, I sent a further email explaining that I didn't expect to be ignored. No reply.

I have been quite measured in my approach to this situation. I don't want to blow my top at them because I feel I'd lose the moral high ground. I don't want someone to be doing what's necessary grudgingly, and I don't want to be unreasonable. However, in my private moments, I sit and wonder what it would take to get a reaction from this individual. How do I get her to start answering my mail?

I thought of a good one today. I thought about sending a big bunch of flowers. This would make everyone in the office coo and peer over her shoulder to ask who it was from and what they said. Then the card could say something like:

My Dearest Ineffective Person

Since you've ignored my emails I thought I would send you these flowers, which in time will die like the empty promises you've made to get your shit together. Roses are red, violets are blue, get on with the stuff you promised to do.

In the end, I just rang a couple of times. I will be speaking to this person or their manager. I will be reasonable. There's no need to flounce. I think the fact speak for themselves - the service has been very poor and there's no excuse for ignoring reasonable attempts at communication. I'm not an angry complainer, I just want my problem solved.

I'm glad my cats are looked after by the nice people.

Monday, December 13

We have two cats

...and one of them looks a bit like this .

Continue with your lives now.

Thursday, December 2

Ah, a spam message

It's been a while since I blogged about a spam message. Here's a quicky, which came in "your mail has bounced" notification - a clever bit of social engineering that's likely to get you to open and read the mail.

Subject: maybe it's the best time
From: "Katya M" [with apparently my email address]
To: [], []
Date: Thu 02/12/10 12:18 AM

Ave, my friend!

I am a sporty, intelligent girl, kind, honest, interesting,
communicative, easy-going and open-minded young lady
I have a lot of friends, they say that I am very decent and
devoted person, understanding and interesting interlocutor. Moreover
I’m a mysterious girl with deep beautiful eyes. To tell you the truth,
sometimes I think that I’m hopeless romantic and try not to loose the
hope to find my dream… but after that, backing to the reality I understand,
that all these just dreams and I should get rid of these ideas, but
just can’t… I want to find a person who can understand, respect and think
much of me. In general I consider that the main thing is mutual


Here's a reply I couldn't send, since she was claiming to have my email address as hers

Dear Katy, or should I call you Katya? In fact, you shouldn't hide behind an anglicised pseudonym, be proud of who you are. You're Katya. Say it. Say it loud. You've Katya... or maybe you're me!? Maybe this whole thing is something I do with a deep-rooted part of my subconscious, unbeknown to my normal self. Are you me? Do I write these emails in the middle of the night while I'm otherwise asleep? Eeek. In that case, I'll just say "Dear Me", and I mean that in every sense.

I'm glad to hear you're sporty and intelligent. When I first read that I thought it said you were spotty and intelligent. I know that pain. Sometimes the geek gene gives intellect, but doesn't have space to offer clear skin. In your case, you've got the brains, but you're using them to move yourself around a sports field. This might make you a nasty joke, the scourge of the geek, but you're also kind, honest and interesting (modest too, perhaps?). I have no doubt that you're communicative, given the unsolicited nature of your email. To say you're easy-going and open-minded and then emphasise your number of friends and how they thing you're decent and devoted and understanding and interesting... well, I think it disproves the easy-going thing. You seem a bit intense.

What the hell's an interlocutor? It sounds scary. Does it involve rubber hoses and electrodes? Then you're mysterious on top of it? Do I look like Peter Andre? You're starting to scare me. You claim to be a hopeless romantic, but your technique suggests you're more of a ruthless interrogator.

Anyway, backing to the reality (backing to the life), I don't give too hoots where you get rid of your dreams or not. I'm not a person who can respect and think much of you - you've made me frightened. As for understanding you. No chance. I've no idea what you're on about.

I hope you find love, or at least help... and if you're me in a nightdress and a state of fugue, then I hope we both get help.

All the best


Digital download is best!?

Hmm - so £6 for the CD, sleeve notes, format independence, longevity, etc... and MORE for the digital download... right...

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