Sounding ignorant – 1/12/2020

Don’t young people realize that their language usage is often one of the first ways that others judge them? While sitting in a local restaurant, a trio of college women were sitting in the adjacent booth. Two with their back to us, but the one sitting across the table from them was facing us, and she wasn’t speaking quietly. In two sentences, she used “like” half a dozen times.

Shortly after that, I was reading an interview with a young man who was identified as a journalist, and though he probably does not write the way he speaks, he also used “like” an inordinate number of times in just a few sentences.

Reading a news article this evening on student debt, an interviewer asked college students how much debt they had, what they thought about proposals to forgive debt, and whether they would be willing to help pay the debt for others. This comment again caught my eye. “Cause like, I have to make my own money, so like, if I make my money, like, I kind of want to keep my money that, like, I make, and not have to, like, give it to my friends.”

Does this young woman have any idea how that would sound in an interview? And when she isn’t hired, will she realize that her inability to put together a coherent sentence might have had an impact on her potential hiring?

“Ya know, like, you know, you like sound like ignorant, when you like speak this way.”

Corporate Lack of Customer Concern – 1/8/2020

In recent weeks, I have had to reach out to two major corporations concerning issues and their response has been apparent disinterest.

First, our heating pad failed. It was only a few months old, but I had not kept the box or the receipt, it was a store brand, but the store would not deal with it. I purchased a name brand heating pad from a different store, kept the box and the receipt as it said it had a 3 year warranty. It lasted a month and failed. On the company website the contact was for an online chat. The chatter’s name and language usage suggested they were not in this country, but I followed all of the procedures including submitting photos of various codes located on the plug, the receipt, and the heating pad and the chat abruptly ended. More searching revealed an email route, so I went through the entire procedure again, including the photos. That was the end of the exchange. I have received no further instruction, no refund, no new heating pad. Needless to say, I won’t support that company again, though they make a good many products other than heating pads.

Next, our primary grocer like so many others have a rewards program. This grocer’s rewards offer fuel points earned by purchases and some purchases have double up to 4 times value points. Before the holidays, they had two different rewards going. If you spent a certain amount during a several week period, you earned 20 to 40% off a general merchandise purchase. We needed new everyday glassware and chose to spend our 20% off on a set. When we got to the register, I asked if I had to do anything special to get the reward and was told no, it would come off automatically. It didn’t. Also before the holidays, purchasing gift cards earned you double fuel points. We purchased some cards as gifts. On Christmas eve, I realized we needed gas, but the grocer gas pumps were closed, so I stopped at a convenience store and purchased enough to await reopening after Christmas. On December 27, we went to fill the tank, the pump asked if I wanted to use the entire reward to which I prompted yes, but the price per gallon did not reduce and the pump wouldn’t let me cancel so I pumped gas, hoping that the points just didn’t come off but were still available. Making a grocery purchase after that, the receipt indicated that the points were gone. They got my benefit, I paid full price for my gas. An email to grocer’s Corporate explaining this produced no response and no refund of points.

They both got their money and the customer’s satisfaction doesn’t seem to matter. We have one other grocery option in town, but I don’t like the store and don’t get fuel discounts with them. Stuck supporting an uncaring Corporation or shopping in a store I don’t like. Conundrum.

When funny is not funny – 1/3/2020

I hate laugh tracks. I am not a television watcher. If I am home alone, it never gets turned on. If hubby is home, it is background noise even if he is reading, on his computer, or his smartphone. If it is on and I am in the same room, I either have on headphones listening to pod casts or music, or I am knitting, spinning, or weaving not paying much attention to it.

For the past several years, I have noticed a hearing difficulty in noisy environments and in October, it was confirmed as fairly significant hearing loss in my right ear, slight loss at high frequencies in my left. The loss in my right ear was significant enough that we took the major budget hit to get me a single hearing aid. It has helped considerably though it is still not set to full functioning, that will occur Monday morning, but one difficulty I have noted is directionality of sound. I guess if we had been willing to fork up twice as much budget money, I would have more directional microphones, but I have what I have.

Our house is a log home with heavy timber roofing system, so if I stand in the living room, the main support beam is way up in the air, well more than 20 feet. Behind the living room is an open kitchen and dining area, but it has an 8 foot ceiling and above that ceiling is the loft. The loft is our “den,” our sitting area where my craft tools are, where hubby’s flat screen TV is mounted, and where our comfy chairs are.

Often when I am in the kitchen, below the loft and he is in the loft with the TV on, I hear the voice sounds, often not distinguishable as conversation, but the annoying laugh track comes through clearly. Some shows vary the track a little, others such as some older sitcom reruns use the same excessive, repetitive track until I want to run screaming from the house. If I am in the room with the TV, and a line is spoken that is funny, I will laugh, often a line is spoken that lacks any level of humor and the laugh track is played. I don’t need to be cued to laugh when something is funny, nor will I laugh just because of their cue if it is not. Fortunately, movies don’t have laugh tracks.