8 hrs at the office, on a Monday, just the kind of day where you want to come home and relax. But no, I have a project for one of my classes due tomorrow evening so I have to work on that, so I can work on the OTHER project for the OTHER class all day tomorrow (my only day off work this week). I get home, tired, but in decent spirits. Check the mail, was hoping my probikekit order would arrive, but not today. Hopefully tomorrow I suppose.
Then on to the apartment. Say hello to my wife, and eye the brown package on the coffee table, ah, at last, the cambriabike order I placed on FEBURARY 19th finally arrived. So much for the Park TM-1 to only hold up shipment by 7-10 business days. I open up the package, check out the Park Tool, a tension meter so when I try building my next set of wheels I don't screw them up. Then on to the other half of the order, the spokes I need for said wheels. I see one bound set of spokes, pull them out and lay them on the table, then the spoke nipples... nothing else in the box. "Well, maybe they put the two sizes in one bundle, leaving me to separate them, thanks..." I take the rubber band and sticker bound bundle apart and start comparing spoke lengths... they're all the same. And that's when I notice that the length of the spokes looks a bit short. I take a closer look at the invoice... then the sticker I'd taken off the spokes. 259mm. #$%&@! I ordered 295 and 293mm!
So I call Cambria Bike. This is the SECOND time they've sent me something other than what I had intended to order. The first time I could take half the blame on, there was no photo of the actual item, but their description was WAY WAY WAY wrong. But that's another story. In any case, the customer service rep was nice enough, and I didn't take out the blunder on him. He even kinda did a "wtf" pause when he noticed that there were two lines of 259mm spokes on the invoice. Somewhere between order and invoice the numbers went screwy. So they reserved the spokes I needed, and said they would refund my return shipping. That at least made me decently satisfied, even though it's going to be another week or two before these wheels are built (first attempt was some time in January I think, but that too is another story).
At this point dinner is ready, my wonderful wife made a very tasty pot roast with mashed potatoes. Yummy! If anyone is looking for a good cookbook, the America's Test Kitchen Family Cookbook is where it's at. It even makes me look like a decent cook!
Now the evening goes rotten for me. You see, I have this laptop. A laptop I bought in Feb of 2003. I had bought the extended warranty on it through OfficeMax's MaxAssurance program. I worked for OfficeMax at the time and had sold plenty of these plans to customers left and right, especially on laptops because I knew they were one of those items "I would buy them on." Well the laptop turned out to be a lemon from about mid 2005 to present. I use the computer for school and on occasion work as well. I use the laptop every day for class notes, projects, etc for school. So going without one for 10 days is difficult, longer near impossible. I suffer through parts of semesters with laptop issues, send it in multiple times during breaks, rarely getting much satisfaction from the repair people. If you ever have to send a laptop in for repair, refuse to send it to MicroMedics. If you looked up Illiterate Incompetent Halfwits, I wouldn't be surprised to find their name.
Anyways, I'd sent it in on the last time on Feb 12th of 2007, it was supposed to just be a lemon verification, meaning that I'd sent this POS in for repair so many times, that MaxAssurance is supposed to give me my money back this time. No more fixing it, just verify that it's busted still and get the check process moving. I said that, more than once, on more than one piece of paper, I old MicroMedics not to send the laptop back to me, not to try to fix it, and if they had any questions contact me (with full contact information in more than one place!) Of course this was the second attempt at trying to collect on the lemon clause, or actually, I guess this is technically the 3rd call with that aim. Regardless, the MaxAssurance people assured me that if I sent it in to MicroMedics they'd handle it. Well, about 7-8 days later I get a box back from UPS. With a laptop inside, my same laptop, which they attempted to fix.
Problem 1: mouse button failure, they replaced mouse paid assembly, mouse button working LESS than when I sent it in.
Problem 2: Power connector short, replaced connector, appears to be working so far...
Problem 3: Machine hard locks, NOT Hard drive, NOT Ram, they replaced the Hard Drive.
Problem 4: They sent the #$%@ thing back to me!
Oh, by the way, getting it back was a week ago's fun... now is when today's fun starts. I call up MaxAssurance to tell them their good for nothing contracted out repair people are illiterate halfwits. I figure I've beat on enough of the rank and file customer service reps in my dozen or so phone calls over the years, so I ask to talk to a supervisor. I get the guy on the phone, explain the situation. He looks at the records, then hits me with this:
"Well it appears that your service contract ran out in Feb of 2006, and the last action I see on this is from Feb of 2006 as well." "Um, I'm sorry, but I renewed that contract before it ended, around January of last year," I state, "Please check again, additionally I had this laptop in for repair as late as last month." He continues to state that they can't find my renewal, nor the latest repair information. I give him the invoice number that I have sitting in front of me, written down in a pen ink that I know is recent, right next to the names of the CS reps that I spoke to in the same ink. He continues to state that invoice was from 2/06, not 2/07... great. And still, my contract is out of date. I get fed up trying to tell him that I find it hard to believe what he's telling me and tell him I'll call back.
Dig up the invoice, with that same number, with a date of, big surprise, 2/12/2007. So with the MicroMedics invoice in front of me, I call back, this time just talking to a customer service rep, the supervisor I'd deal with again later if needs be. I want to see if someone else can find this missing information. Nope, not showing up for them either. Their system has not only lost my renewal information (which apparently was there the LAST time I called because they had to locate it after realizing this laptop was over 3 years old, the term of the first contract) but also was dating calls as 2006 instead of 2007. Oh yay! So not only am I not getting anywhere with getting my money back on this thing, now they say I haven't called in the last year, nor have a valid contract!
After much explaining with the customer service rep, she sends off the whole mess to their research department peoples for review. She says that it usually takes a day or two to get back from that and to call back. She's been nice enough, and "understanding" to my situation (I'm sure they are to everyone, it's their job to defuse upset people with broken s***.) so I let her go, promising (or should it be vowing) to call wed or Thursday. I'm fuming on the inside, can't believe their system is so damned stupid to loose stuff, able to have wrong dates, I write code for a living and could probably write a better system asleep or drunk, or both.
Lastly, I call in my secret weapon, you see, as I said, I worked for Office Max. I just hoped some of the Managers who were there when I was still work at my old store. And sure enough, Shane was on duty when I called. He's going to see about getting a more direct line to someone in MaxAssurance for me. Or at the very least, I can express my very very very very very strong dissatisfaction for the position I'm placed in and how I highly doubt I could ever recommend MaxAssurance products to anyone ever again (and yes, I don't, no way no how no more). I bought a new laptop back at the latest round of this saga, in Janurary, right before the Vista release, so I got one with XP on it. From Circuit City. Who has an in house repair shop, so at least when someone's being a halfwit, I can go call that to their face and deal with them in person.
Oh, and now, I am going to find that drink. If you're still reading, thanks for letting me vent.