Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Pardon me while I pull something out of my...

My son Daniel is in preschool during the day and I signed him up to participate in something called All Star Sports, because its apparently not enough for kids to run around and play at recess, but we need to pay additional money for them to be taken from one room to another room to kick a ball around in an organized manner. Anyway, they sent me a note saying that my account was in arrears and I owed them for three weeks. I wrote back and let them know I was paid up according to my records and if they thought I owed them money they needed to let me know which three weeks I owed money for. They wrote back and told me December. I told them I had paid and gave them a check number. They wrote back and told me June. I told them Daniel hadn't even been in preschool in June, that he was in summer camp. They wrote back and told me July. I told them Daniel wasn't enrolled in All Star Sports in July and by the way, I was pulling him out as I was a little tired of this exercise. Next they suggested November. I told them I didn't think the Magic 8 Ball worked well for accounting and they might want to try Quickbooks.

Similarly, we recently ordered some checks at work. We tried a new vendor, one recommended by a new bank we are using. They were supposed to have a quick turnaround time (2 days) and were going to save us a whopping $12 so I thought I'd give them a try. When they emailed the proof back to me addressed to Ms. Krumm, I should have taken that as a warning. Now, a check proof consists of about 5 lines of text. Our address, phone number and a brief slogan beneath that. They had the address correct. I sent it back, noting the phone number and slogan were missing. Three days later they sent it back with the phone number added. Once again, I responded saying they had omitted the slogan. Several days elapsed without any word. The owner, each time I spoke with him, blamed snafus on a mysterious “they” who kept botching his commands. In the meantime, we had run out of checks. Our financial assistant was in a panic and wanted to know what to do. I suggested she consult a Magic 8 Ball. Long story short, after three weeks, a complaint to the bank and one more proof (this one correct!) we got our checks, along with a long and defensive email from the vendor stating how he had worked so hard on our order and not even charged us for all the extra proofs he had sent, etc. (What a bargain.) When I forwarded this email to my boss, he responded with: but you saved $12!

I work in finance so I know that when you combine (a) work that involves lots of piddly detail with (b) being human, you are bound to make mistakes. I make them all the time and so do the people I work with. I don't expect perfection and I'm willing to forgive just about anything as long as someone is willing to cop to their mistakes. A little accountability people. Is that too much to ask? My sources say yes.

On a more positive note, last weekend I went to an ugly sweater party thrown by Seroj, he of I-still-haven't-conjured-up-an-Armenian-flag-for-you fame. He gave away prizes for ugliest sweater. This dude won.

Then they entertained us with some music.

And while he totally underperformed in the ugly sweater department, you have to give Seroj points for (a) wearing a sweater vest and (b) having a band set-up in his living room. While they were busy performing I snooped around to see if he had a flag tucked away somewhere but sadly, nothing I could steal and paste onto my widget. He tells me he's working his connections (re: flag) but I've been hearing that for a while now. I don't know. I hate to pull out the big guns, but I may have to request that his paychecks start being printed by, uh, a certain vendor I know.

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  1. I think you need to do some research into what other countries google for, and use the keywords. Like milk maids, surely some country out there googles for milk maids?

    Who knows.

    Definitely an ugly jumper, kudos to him for wearing it with a smile!

  2. For some not-so-bizarre reason. I keep picturing HomerJ wearing the exact same sweater. Don't ask me why. It's a mystery. Hehe.

  3. I read this post about an hour ago, I wasn't goint to comment but... When I visited my "visitor" counter lo and behold a visit from Nepal, Kathmandu actually. Even though I don't collect flags I thought of you and intened to brag. Crap... you have a Napal already!

  4. That's one hell of a jumper alright.

    What kind of music did the band play??!!

  5. HAHA! You know I think you owe me for a box of chocolates I sent you in the month of Octemberary. I'll be waiting ever so patiently by my mailbox for your reply and not to worry, I'll take your check whether or not if it has a snazzy logo on it!

    Great post. Made me laugh. And I love your BS pic at the start! Too funny.


  6. Hey Seroj, what kind of music does your band play? Classic-sweater-vest-rock-cum-Elvis. I don't know, they were good. Made you forget how badly you were dressed.

  7. JA, nice gloating. I had a visit from Azerbaijan that didn't register a flag. Bastards. L Avery, your check is in the mail.

  8. That is an impressive sweater. I also like the fact that he's taken his drink out of the brown paper bag to drink it!

    You should be so proud of yourself - a whole $12. You've probably saved someone's job with that.


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