Thursday, February 18, 2010

Come on. They couldn't possibly botch every detail.


Remember when Brent Brown Toyota sold us a car and we got the ultimate run-around because not a single person on their staff could offer up an honest answer, or even return a phone call? After the 48 hours of time-wasting annoyance they put us through, we could at least sigh a sigh of relief that we would never ever have to deal with their incompetence ever again. We could just get back to worrying that somehow they managed to mask some serious problems with the car we currently own. Good times.

Interestingly, someone from the dealership also left a message to say that she had read the Dear Brent Brown blog letter and she wanted to 'set things right.' I thought that was a nice gesture and called her back.

She didn't answer.

Nor did she return the call.

But really... it's not like they failed to do anything right. They sell cars every day. I mean, they did take our trade-in car and handle all the paperwork with the bank and pay off the remainder of our old loan in a timely manner, so that we would not get calls from our bank asking why the payment for our Nissan was late.



Random thoughts

As I'm writing this, I'm simultaneously checking e-mails from clients, mentally revising all of the designs I'm working on this week and searching for the annoying Littlest Pet Shop Pen that Minnie has stashed in the living room. It keeps making music noises which are supposed to alert her when the pet needs to be fed, played with or has e-pooped on the carpet. I don't think she's fed it in 8 days but neither it, nor the batteries, will die.

The house is in a state of chaos/dirtiness/disarray that I haven't seen since we moved. I don't know who is going to clean it. I certainly am not.

I don't dare open up any of the projects I need to work on, because if that part of my brain gets going again I'll never sleep. Kind of like last night.

I let Joe talk me into lifting weights 2 days a week AND one day of interval training. If the intervals don't kill me, the sore-muscle aftermath will finish me off. Not everyone needs to have ab muscles or triceps, you know!

On a positive note, I may have found the golden ticket to the whole injured foot problem that has been plaguing me for almost 7 entire months. Last week I got my very own set of custom, old-person orthotic inserts for my shoes. Also I have some pretty fabulous anti-inflammatory medication that has really helped. Except that I need to stay awake for 45 minutes after I take it to keep my heart from stopping. Or so I'm told. That's pretty much why I'm wasting a post on stream-of-consciousness thoughts. BUT... theoretically, I should be back on my feet and running again in a few weeks. Keep your fingers crossed. I think my 45 minutes is up. Good night!

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

In case I needed reminding

You know you're the mother of an almost-4-year-old boy when a conversation happens as follows:

Mom: What is all over your face?

Bart: It's blood.

Monday, February 8, 2010

Free digital papers

Any digital scrapbookers out there? Here's a totally free set of Valentine digital papers!

Download the entire collection here. If you use the papers and want to show off your creation, include the link in a comment — I’d love to see what any creative sorts come up with. Happy Valentine’s Day!

Friday, February 5, 2010

Pottery sale

My sister just finished firing in her new kiln. She has some fabulous items for sale on her blog - mugs, piggy banks, awesome pie plates and more! Check them out here.

I have one of these pie plates and it is really fabulous. The pies come out perfect AND it is a lovely serving dish.

Thursday, February 4, 2010

In which every used-car-dealer myth is confirmed

Dear Brent Brown Toyota

I would not say that our most recent car-buying experience was the worst ever. I would not even go so far as to accuse you of being the most dishonest dealer we've ever done business with (that honor still rests with the seller of the Pathfinder, who - among other things - gave us a falsified 'safety' inspection. Totally legal.)

In fact, at the mid-point of the transaction, I actually entertained the notion that we had purchased a vehicle with a minimal amount of hassle. In fact you even agreed to hold our trade-in vehicle so that Joe's mom could purchase/register it from you the next day, at the exact trade-in cost. That seemed like such a nice, human thing to do.

Then the lying began.

I suppose I can't actually accuse you of outright lies. It could be completely possible that someone arrived 2 hours later and fell in love with the Pathfinder and offered to buy it on the spot for MORE than the trade value. They might very well have been able to see past the salt-encrusted exterior to the lovely SUV that lay underneath. They could have been searching high and low for an interior that was equal parts microfiber and orange goldfish crumbs. It could have happened!

But I doubt it.

I understand that in the excitement of such eager buyers, you may have not found the time to return our phone calls. We appreciated the salesman's possibly-sexist refusal to speak to my mother-in-law in a civil manner. Old fashioned manners are so charming. When my husband actually had to drive to the dealership to track down the sales manager, he totally did not resent spending his last day of vacation explaining the importance of verbal agreements. I did appreciate the myriad of excuses you then gave for holding on to the Pathfinder. It gave us so much to choose from!

I do love choices.

When the Mystery Over-Eager Buyer failed to materialize, we were instead told that the car had so many problems that it had to be gotten rid of wholesale. In fact, you went so far as to have a mechanic perform a lengthy and thorough safety inspection after the dealership had closed and without disturbing the salt-crusting! Truly a miracle.

Of course we were interested in hearing the laundry-list of problems that had appeared in our beloved Pathfinder. Especially since my husband had just done a pretty good safety check of his own before we drove it 500 miles to St. George and back 2 days earlier. And especially since your own service manager had test-driven the car and found it worthy of a good trade-in value. Whew! I understand that you may have wished to shield us from any unpleasant news. Therefore your flat refusal to disclose any of the supposed $900 worth of repairs was completely warranted. In fact, this conversation...

"What exactly is wrong with the car?"

"We can't tell you."

"I'd like to know the problems it had."

"It doesn't concern you. But it won't pass safety."

"Who performed the inspection? I'd like his name."

"We can't tell you that. It really doesn't matter. Ummm... he's not even here right now. Yeah that's it..."

...totally didn't make us suspicious at all.

In all fairness, it was nice that you let us spend an entire afternoon taking the Pathfinder on one last trip, to get a different safety inspection at our own expense. Which amazingly turned up not one single problem. And you let my husband sit in the parking lot, not letting the Pathfinder out of his sight until the sales manager grudgingly signed all the papers so that my mother-in-law could finish the purchase of the car.

In conclusion, thank you for re-confirming that all my preconceived notions and gross generalizations of car dealers are completely validated. I will absolutely recommend that if anyone is considering buying a car from you, they should run screaming for the hills.

Yours etc...

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Definitely a step down

My precious computer is in the repair shop. Fortunately we have an older Dell desktop living in Joe's lair in the basement where I can check some of my e-mail accounts, visit Facebook and make a blog post or two. Of course, there are definitely some downsides, including:

1. I've kind of forgotten how to use a PC. It took a few minutes to remember how to search for things (stupid Start menu) and the hot keys are totally in the wrong place.

2. The keyboard on this thing is totally not the sleek and smooth iMac version. It feels so big and clunky and I type really really slowly!

3. I miss my big, beautiful and color-correct monitor.

4. I don't know any of my passwords!

5. The desktop is clogged up with garbage I've let the kids install on this machine - namely some stupid pet games from McDonalds.

6. I can't download any of the pictures from my cameras OR put them on my blog.

6. Most importantly I don't have InDesign, Photoshop or Illustrator on this computer meaning that I just get more and more behind on all the work I have.

So cross your fingers that today we can figure out how to restore Maccy to a fully-functioning state and can welcome him back to our home. Because I really miss him.