Archive for February, 2011

Maternity Leave + First Grade = ?

This year, we were blessed to have a much better experience than Kindergarten. The rub in all of this? Isaac’s teacher left for maternity leave. Her last day was Thursday. The kids get the long term sub starting tomorrow.

Now, let’s get one thing straight here. I have NOTHING against this long term sub. I met her at the Valentine’s Shindig and she seems perfectly fine. Mrs. J, the regular teacher assures me that the kids are in good hands. She was even in on the interview process that hired Mrs. M.  Plus, with this economy, there’s a lot of really good teachers out there without jobs.

My largest issue here is one I’ve been through before. This is the 2nd year we’ve drawn the short straw and gotten a long term sub. Last year, Miss H. was out for 2 months because of a tonsillectomy. Now, we’re losing Mrs. J until the bitter end.  For a kid who knows how to work things and thrives on consistency, this is not cool. Not at all.

So, now, it’s all about how to handle the transition. How to handle Isaac when he decides to go off the rails because Mrs. M. is not the same as Mrs. J, and he tries to pull his garbage with her.

I love the fact that Mrs. M has extensive first grade experience and I love the fact that when I was in the room she was genuinely interested in really getting to know each child and their personalities. I think she’s got a decent handle on Isaac’s silly, stubborn and sensitive personality.

So, again, the jury is out. We’ll see what happens with the class, Mrs. M. and how Isaac fits into all of this.

Please…let’s have as good an end to this year as we have had the first 100 days!

February 27, 2011 at 8:24 pm Leave a comment

It’s not a disability, and you are a moron.

Today, I was doing my usual troll of my favorite blogs-and I stopped as I always do at Consumerist. There were a few things that caught my eye-a guy railing at B of A, a guy who was foreclosing on a Wells Fargo office (awesome…), but one thing really stood out. It was so blatant that I had to delve deeper.

So, here’s the story. You can read it here, but I’ll give you the Cliff Notes.

Guy goes to one of those AWESOME all you can eat Sushi joints that are prevalent in SoCal.  Guy is diabetic. Guy starts peeling the fish off of the sushi and eating the fish and leaving the rice. Owner goes to guy and says that he needs to eat the rice as well, as that is part of the sushi. Guy says he can’t eat rice. Owner offers him solution by offering to charge him 3.00 less for 2 orders of sashimi. Guy declines.

THEN, here’s the best part…

Guy leaves sushi joint and then PROCEEDS TO SUE THE SUSHI JOINT FOR DISCRIMINATION AND HUMILIATION because…

ready?

HE HAS A DISABILITY!!

Umm. Yeah. Right.

Let’s just break down how moronic this guy is in a few easy steps.

1) He was eating sashimi anyway. Just pay the guy. You’re getting a deal.

2a) Diabetes is NOT a disability. It is a medical condtion. You do have to take pains to control it, but come the heck on!

2b) There’s nothing in the “diabetic code” that says you can’t eat rice. Limit, yes. Not eat? Nope.  Even when you are (as this guy is) on oral meds, you can still eat rice.

3) He violated the rules. There was no  discrimination.

4) Just because you didn’t eat the rice doesn’t mean you are entitled to 4,000.00  for “humiliation and undue duress.” Seriously.

It’s no secret I’m a sushi fiend. I just cover my meal for the additional carbs in the rice. I don’t do a lot of rolls…I’d rather do the nigri sushi. Mmm. Yummy.

There is no way I’d even think of 1) leaving the rice. It helps make the meal. There’s so much flavor in ONE BITE of rice… and 2) demanding that the rules of an establishment don’t apply to me.

Diabetes isn’t a disability.

This guy? he’s a moron. Plain and simple.  I hope the judge laughs him out of court and the sushi joint gets triple the business that they have currently.

(disclosure: I know this place, I’ve eaten there. Yum. I’ve got no ties other than I saw the name of the place and said “yo! I know that place!!)

February 19, 2011 at 11:37 pm Leave a comment

From the “it seemed like a good idea at the time” files

Yes, I have an entire file folder of things that “seemed like a good idea at the time..”

This one is right up there with the best of them. Ok, maybe not the best, but certainly up there with some of the brain surgery-style antics that I get myself into. Then again, it could just be the yarn gods laughing at me…but let’s get to the story and you decide the level of brainlessness that I possessed.

 

The other night, I went to the local yarn shop for a visit with Cookie A and Anne Hanson.  For those not in the knit world, they’re big designers.  Cookie designs SOCKS. Yes, my favorite thing in the whole universe to knit. Socks. These socks are just awesome.

I had my book in hand. I had my yarn (hey Jen-remember this? It’s finally going to BE something!)  ready. Oh, wait. I had it hanked. crap.

So, I could have done one of two things-

1. Wind it at home. Contend with two cats who are insanely not used to me knitting. One who even killed a big project. I’m still a bit bitter about that one.

2. take it with me and wind it at the bustling shop, and pray that there were no fiascos.

So, I figured option 2 was the better of the two options. I sat down, opened up the yarn and started to wind. It was all fun and games until….

yep. the dreaded tangle.

This was not just any tangle. This was an EPIC TANGLE.

Now. Here I could have done two things-

1. walk away. Put it in my bag and then proceed to come home and deal with said epic tangle and hopefully nothing worse.

2. Keep going and maybe enlist a fellow knitter to help out so I could get this dang thing wound once and for all.

Yeah. I did the second thing.

I was invested. It had to be finished. As I always say-it became a MORAL IMPERATIVE.

So, I sat there with a fellow knitter and we wound, untangled and laughed our way through the hank of yarn, discussing the benefits of a swift and ball winder. She got hers after she had the same thing that happened to me with this sock yarn happen with a 1,000 yard hank of laceweight. That stuff is THIN. Yeah. REALLY THIN.

During this hilarious fiasco, we had one of the fiber bloggers from the Times Union come over. Aaron sat down and promptly began to giggle. He asked what was going on.  My response:

“well, this seemed like a good idea at the time…”

There were photos taken.

There was much laughter.

Now, after an evening of winding and giggles, it is now a ball, ready to be knit into a pair of socks.

See?

It seemed like a good idea at the time…

February 12, 2011 at 7:14 am 1 comment

One more thing I just don’t get

Today, I made one of my visits to Wal Mart for a few items. One being a Valentine Present for the small boy- a copy of Lego Batman for the DS.

I checked out uneventfully, and paid, and I used a card for part of the purchase. That part of the purchase just didn’t add up. The items I purchased on that ticket were priced 19.99, 13.49, and 19.98 respectively. The bill came to 31 and change.

Didn’t make sense, but since I’ve used this cashier before and she’s been competent and I wasn’t watching the scanner…I figured something rang up on sale as things are apt to do at Wal Mart.

When I checked the receipt, I found that the game was never paid for. It was out of the security clamshell, and I think the sweet, competent cashier thought she had scanned it. Well, it never rang up.

So, I went over to customer service and showed them my receipt and insisted on paying for it. It’s only right and I fully believe in Karma-you know, what comes around goes around.  Plus, it’s only right. I had the money, I had the item, I noticed it. I had to pay for it.

So, when I went over, the customer service desk person asked me  WHY I was pointing it out to them and insisting on paying for the game. She seemed to be genuinely shocked that I wasn’t walking out with the game free and clear.

I was insistent that I pay for this game. Again. Karma.

Girl kept looking and staring at me as I handed her my debit card to pay for the game. She even tried to call the computer game that I had purchased for myself the video game. I quickly corrected her and noted that it was a DS game I was trying to pay for and NOT a PC game.

I just don’t get it. Is honesty in that short of a supply these days that it is unthinkable for people to actually fess up?  Is doing the right thing so foreign a concept to so many people that they look at those of us who try and do the right thing like we have 20 heads and are a slight shade of puce?

I really don’t get the reaction. But that’s just me.

February 12, 2011 at 6:53 am Leave a comment

Good customer service is alive and well!

It’s not a secret that I love The Consumerist. Seriously. I was the first one of my good buddies to know about the good ol’ local snake in the broccoli at Friday’s incident. No, I’m not linking. It was disgusting and I’ll spare you all the photos.  So, when I basically killed my favorite pair of dress shoes and really desperately needed a new pair of sneakers, I went trolling around online. It was then I went and visited the Consumerist for one of my daily reads. The top article was about how Zappos.com had gone above and beyond and even sent flowers to the customer.

I decided it was time to visit their site.  If this was the kind of customer service that they gave, then maybe it was time to patronize the company.

I found two pairs of shoes, even a pair of my beloved Sketchers that I ordered. Plus a pair of Nike sneakers that looked really, really good.

They came quickly, but that’s not the point. That kind of service is easy to provide.

It was what happened next that blew my mind.

The Nike sneakers were awful. With all of the damage I have done to the bones in my feet, I can’t have any sort of tethered tongue on my shoes.  Most ones with laces don’t have tethered tongues! Well, this one did. Yikes.

I got it on my foot and instant pain! Yikes! Horrible!

So, taking a deep breath and bracing myself for impact, I called the company to inquire about their return policy. It was a Saturday. I was braced for long hold times and generally surly staff because it was a Saturday morning.

No such thing happened. I was put on the line with a sweet, wonderful human being , without a bunch of “press..” options.

I explained the situation with my shoes. Explained that I needed a new pair of sneakers, because mine were rapidly biting the dust.

Normally, I would expect a canned response..but instead, I got

“So…rapid death, huh? Well, we best get you sneakers that are more alive than what you currently have!”

The CSR then noted my address, and asked me about the weather and the evil snow we were getting. We got to chatting and we chatted forever. She had no quotas, it was all about the human interaction that makes their customers tick.

She then emailed me a label for FREE SHIPPING back! Yay! and then upgraded my account to VIP status. So, now, I get free overnight shipping. On top of all of that, she overnighted my new shoes to me.

I thought that was awesome, but the crowning glory was what cropped up the other day in my mailbox.

A hand written, decorated thank you note with stickers in it from the M&M store in Las Vegas! (sidenote-the Zappos headquarters is in Vegas…) It not only referenced the conversation we had-but the little gift was so totally perfect-and blew me away. We had chatted about the M&M store and the Coke store, and how I wished I had grabbed some stickers or something when I was passing through all those years ago.

 

Now, I have my stickers, a new friend at Zappos and a new place to get my shoes.

Visit Zappos. It’s nice when a company not only empowers their employees to be HUMAN but encourages it.

February 6, 2011 at 10:44 am 2 comments

Dear Entity that Controls the Weather:

I understand that people start doing their “snow dances” in December for a proverbial “White Christmas.” I, however, do not.  I truly understand that I live in the Northeast. It does snow here. A dusting?  Fine.  A scene like this:

stupid snowpocalypse!

uncool. Completely uncool. Especially after you’ve dumped at least 8 inches on us prior to this.

Now, right now, I’m willing to make this a civil conversation. No more snow, please. There’s just nowhere to put any more!

Come the end of next month? This will become threats, cranklyness and general disgust with the fact that there is still snow.

Again, this:

seriously enough.

Thank you.
Your Fairweather Friend,
Laura

February 4, 2011 at 8:16 am Leave a comment


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