Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Wireless. Wheeeeeee!

It was over 30 years ago, when I was the accordion player in a popular, local polka band and hanging out with the other guys one summer day, that I suffered a humiliating experience at Grotto Pizza at Harvey’s Lake that left me with an anger that continues to this day. I ordered two slices of pizza and a soda. The guy charged me for them and then went to bring them to me. He served me and then went right back to the register and rang up my order again, forgetting completely that I’d already paid him. He insisted that I had not paid, but I had. I couldn’t talk to the manager – he was it. I was hungry. I paid him again. And in spite of Grotto Pizza expanding to other locations here in the valley, I’ve never given them so much as another tin nickel of business.

In part that experience shaped my adult shopping habits. I will not be mistreated by any business more than once. A person is allowed mistakes, but a business is not without recompense for wasting my time or causing me grief. I simply will not shop again in a place where I am not treated respectfully, fairly, promptly, courteously, and competently. The other side of that coin is my absolute loyalty to businesses which serve me well.

A few years ago I spent about $50 on a plumbing part that I needed to fix the shower only to bring it home and totally destroy it because I knew less about doing the job than I thought I did. I called The Home Depot and asked to speak to the manager. Jokingly I asked, “Do you have an I bought something at your store and brought it home and ruined it and you’ll give me a free one to replace it policy?” The guy laughed and asked me what had happened. I told him truthfully that I simply broke the part due to my own inexperience and carelessness. He told me to bring it back and they’d give me a new one. Guess where I always go first when I need home improvement supplies?

Thus it is that I shamelessly refer repeatedly to Team Effort Cycle here. They (the Schuler family) sold me the Fly and the BV and have been absolutely terrific at servicing me quickly, affordably, and happily since.

And thus it grieves me to acknowledge this on the back of my daughter’s car…

PCs have served me well. I have all the software I could possibly need, and much of it is freeware. The thought of having to rebuild my collection of utilities from the ground up for a different operating system is more than daunting. Unless I had to, I’d never switch from PCs and Windows in spite of believing Gates to be the greediest man who’s ever lived for selling knowingly flawed software and then charging for the fixes. I guess I admire my girls for abandoning PCs and Windows because they believe that their Apples will serve them better (They just got them within the past month.) but at this stage in the game I couldn’t do it myself.

What does any of this have to do with scootering? Just that I’m now writing this entry from a cozy little park on my daughter’s old Toshiba laptop. If I get up the nerve, I just might scooter off to McDonald’s, Starbucks, or Panera Bread and log onto one of their wi-fi networks to post it. I don’t exactly look like your typical wi-fi, laptop junkie, but then again, I kind of burst the mold of what comes down the street on a scooter too.

Hey! Wait a minute! On a lark I figured I'd check to see if there's a wireless connection available right here and what do you know? There is! Somebody's running an unsecured Linksys wireless router in the neighborhood! I'm posting this from right here in the park. Okay, so I'll have to add the pictures later at home today, but from now on I'll carry an interface for the camera card to post pictures live too.

No comments: