Posts Tagged 'pet peeve'

Pet peeve: Co-workers who clip their fingernails @ work

Perhaps I’m a shallow human-being, but listening to someone clip their fingernails while at work drives me absolutely nuts

Anyone else think that’s kinda nasty and inappropriate?  The first person to say “just put your headphones on” gets a swift kick to the teeth!





The “racket” continues…

This past summer I wrote a quick blurb about something that I referred to as the “emissions test” racket.  Essentially, the state vehicle emissions tests are all about making certain that our automobiles aren’t putting out higher-than-acceptable emissions from the tail pipe.  If the levels are too high, then your vehicle fails.  At that point you have to pay to get a tune-up (or some sort of adjustment) until the vehicle passes.  Good times!

Now, I’ve never had a vehicle “fail” the emissions test until this past July when the gas cap on my Saab “failed”, for whatever reason.  You don’t really ever find out why.  I immediately purchased a new ($25) gas cap, trotted back to the testing facility, showed them my receipt, and then received a “pass” on my emissions test.  Did you catch what was missing there?  They never, ever looked at my new gas cap, nor did they test it.

The whole thing is a “racket”, I tell you.  A money-grubbing racket.

Imagine my surprise, then, when my fellow Saab-owning co-worker reports that his gas cap failed at his recent emissions test!  The problem?  Well… his gap cap is brand-new, Saab-branded, and totally legit.  The second problem?  Upon providing his receipt, they gave him a passing grade anyhow – despite that fact that it “fails” their testing.

So…here’s a big “thanks, fellas” to all those folks at the emissions testing facilities who obviously care greatly about our environment…

…and a few bucks in their pockets.

Pet peeve: caulking curved things

We’ve been remodeling our main bathroom for about…oh…’forever’ now, I think.  It never ends!  Made some good headway this past Saturday, however, when I finally installed our two sinks, faucets, water lines, and ran the drains.  Guess what?  It all works and doesn’t leak!

What I don’t like?  Caulking around the curved sinks.  The green-tiled countertop looks great, the white sinks are purty, and the faucets are just about perfect.  What better way to complete the project than with a poorly run bead of white caulk around each of the sinks?  Honestly, that part of the project appears to be beyond my skill-set.  😦

I’ll have to post a picture…

Pet peeve: the “emissions test” racket

Not the ‘noise’, mind you.

For several weeks now, I’ve been putting off getting the emissions tested on my car.  I’m not concerned about it passing or not, I’m just lazy and getting to the emissions test places are a hassle.  Well, I finally managed to drop by one yesterday.  Pull up, take a ticket, wait in line, and then drive in the testing bay.  The first thing they do these days is test your gas cap.  Guess what?  Mine failed.  I was instructed to continue with the test, and — assuming that passed ok — I would have to get a new gas cap, and then return to let them see it.  The car itself passed with flying colors.  Whoo hoo!  Still, it’s aggravating to have to go back to an emissions place over something so paltry.  I complained to my wife that the whole thing is a “racket”.  She kindly reminded me that they don’t make any money off of me getting a new gas cap or not.  Probably true.  That said, it is our environment and so they must really care about such things.

One would assume.

Wanting to just be done with the whole ordeal, I left work a few minutes early to purchase a gas cap and stop by the emissions place again.  I didn’t have to pay again, nor did I have to wait in line: I just waltzed into the office and demanded a retest!  (Nicely, of course)  I politely informed the gentleman there that I had purchased a new gas cap and handed him my paperwork.   He trotted into a back room and appeared again a few minutes later with a “passed” report for me and my vehicle!

Did you catch that?

Not once did he look at my car, look at my new gas cap, or test the new gas cap that I had purchased.  I guess he just trusted that I was telling the truth.

Or the whole thing is a racket, just like I surmised.

Pet Peeve: Voice-Activated Phone System Menus

It’s the wave of the future: hands-free operation of everything, everywhere.  We tell computers what to do and they do it.  Have you even seen any of the Star Trek movies?  Scotty (James Doohan) has been doing this for years.

Well, folks — the future is here, now.

Voice-activated phone system menus — a.k.a “Interactive Voice Response” systems — have been frustrating helping us for years.  It’s more and more common these days to call your favorite business and be presented with voice prompts that say things like “For English, say ‘English'” and so on.  I understand that some customers may *require* this type of setup, but for the rest of us it’s just plain irritating.  Honestly, I would probably prefer a system that gets you to a person *immediately*, you present your request, and they transfer you directly to the queue you need to be in.  Instead, I have to say things like “tech support”, “billing”, “no”, “yes”, or “operator” into the phone — and usually more than once, since the system won’t always pick up on what I’m saying.  Better yet, be prepared for *serious frustration* if you have any sort of background noise!  I’ve had some aggravating and embarassing times trying to navigate a voice-menu while at work, since my co-workers can usually hear me trying to speak loudly enough to be recognized, but not so loudly that I’m being obnoxious.  Repeating “tech support” over and over is especially amusing.

Good times.

What I really fear, however, is the future of these voice-activated menus.  Will my doctor’s office have them too?  Hmmm.  What might THAT look like?…

  • CLINIC: “Thank you for calling the <Your City Here> Family Clinic.  For emergencies, please hang up and dial 9-1-1.  To schedule an appointment, please say ‘Appointment’.”
  • CALLER: “Appointment.”
  • CLINIC:  “I’m sorry.  We didn’t hear you.  To schedule an appointment…”
  • CLINIC: “You’ve reached our Appointment Scheduling line.  Please state the nature of your medical need.”
  • CALLER: Ahem. <whispers> “Herpes.”
  • CLINIC: “I’m sorry.  We didn’t hear you.  Please state…”
  • CALLER: “Herpes.”
  • CLINIC: “Did you say ‘herpes’?  If so, please say ‘yes’.”
  • CALLER: “Yes”.
  • CLINIC: “Thank you.  Please state the type of herpes that you are calling about.”
  • CALLER: <click>

Honestly.  The good, old “press 1 for billing, press 2 for support…” menus are just fine with me.  Would someone please tell Verizon that?