5-18-14 Sunday (Discounting Poor Service)

On my last post I griped about my job’s method of dispatching work.  Before I even published that post, they changed it for the better.  Naturally, I had already put so much time and energy into explaining bitching that I didn’t want to delete it so… I rolled with it. Fortunately, they made the process must simpler and I’m much happier.  After all, that was the goal, right?

If there was a weekend of/for something, this weekend it would be discounts.  So let’s call it, the Weekend of Discounts.  Jim bought, traded, stole, fabricated, mastered, or whatever, the use of several Groupon discounts and Restaurant.com certificates.  Ready for the dining reviews?


Friday 5/16, Gus’ Sir Beef.  Yeah, that’s the name of it.  It’s a dumpy looking place so we were hoping to find that hidden gem amongst the ick.  Verdict?  Not so much.  The service was slow which is worse when there’s hardly anyone in there.  I had the fried pork chop which was OK.  One of my sides was the mashed potatoes with gravy and I thought the gravy was terrible.  Jim had the hamburger steak which had too much pepper on it.  There was 2 different gravies on his plate.  One like I had on his mashed which he said was OK and another on the meat.

Enjoy Lakeside views while dining in our Lakefront Restaurant.Saturday 5/17, lunch at the Lakefront at the Hilton.  We had to spend x to use the Groupon.  We ordered an appetizer.  Chicken quesadillas.  These were tasty.  Next, we both had Philly cheesesteaks.  We didn’t finish them; we took the leftovers home.  They were more like roast beef sandwiches that would have paired nicely with au jus.  I think it was because the meat was so thick.  They definitely weren’t Philly’s.  They were tasty.  Service.  Bad.  The server only had 4 tables.  He never checked to see if the food was OK.  I ran out of beverage.  Etc.

main_photo_1Saturday night dinner.  The Diamond.  This place is kinda “divey” but it was real good.  I ordered the fried pork chop (giving this fried pork chop thing another try) and it was delish.  Mostly.  Mostly?  Well, every once in a while I’d get this pickle taste.  I like pickles, just not with other food.  There were no pickles on the plate so I thought maybe some juice got on the plate somewhere?  At the end of the meal, I notice a pickle slice stuck to the bottom of a pork chop and mentioned it to the server.  She said that they use the same fryer to fry pickles and it must have gotten stuck.  Makes sense but it kinda ruined some of my meal.  Jim had the Diamond Boy and said it was good:

diamond boyWe’ll be back! 

On Sunday we ate Lakefront Restaurant leftovers, caught Spiderman 2 at the theater and made dinner at home. 

I haven’t done this in a long time:

DIH - Animated More like weekend in our history:

This weekend in 2009 was spent in Bisbee, AZ.  We explored old downtown, a copper pit, Jim tries to escape the US. Read about it here.  The next day we took a ghost tour, saw creepy statues.  Read about that here.  And finally, the day after we explored a mine, I tried out the crapper.  Read about that here.

5-9-14 Friday (Rants O’ Plenty)

Work has been a little more stressful lately.  We’re busy and management feels as though the automated work dispatching part of the system isn’t working well.  When ready, we click a button to get the next task which could be to review an appraisal, review title, underwrite a completely new file, etc.  This system prioritizes tasks by age, importance of the task itself, etc, etc.  So my issue?  Well, we’re not hitting the magical button but rather are being bombarded with reports.  Tasks that are old report, incomplete report, new loans to underwrite lists, etc.  So now we’re presented with lists of things to do and it feels pressured. I liked working the way the computer dispatched them.  I was oblivious to how far behind we were.  But… I still love my job and that’s the important part, right?

As typical, we went to Augusta this weekend (5/9 – 5/11).  It was a relaxed weekend, no looming projects, nothing pressing.  Friday night when we arrived we freshened up and hit the bar for a few drinks and some socialization.  Saturday we shopped.

Lunch at Red Robin.  We spotted this in the parking lot.  I love it!

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The weather was scattered showers.  Very little rain which was a plus. 

This weekend we saw a deer (well, it was a blurry run-by).  In the evening, we were talking with some friends when a fox walked slowly through the golf cart’s headlights.  It was nice to get a long look at it.  Jim spotted a huge lizard on a tree behind our RV.  I didn’t have my regular camera handy so I used my phone.  With all the zooming, I didn’t get a real clear photo.  I think it might have been a chameleon. 

2014-05-10 009

There’s always an abundance of rabbits here so naturally we saw them several times.  Oh, and ants.  Yeah, we have a trail of them in the RV so we’ll need to spray before we leave for Charlotte.  I love the wild life, but you can keep the bugs.

We went out for Chinese with Jeff and Paul and as always had a great time. 

Rant Cloud Animated - Slow

Now for the credit card rant

After Red Robin, we continued shopping and I received an email from Discover.  Suspicious activity, blah blah.  The email shows me 3 transactions.  Walmart from Thursday (yeah I went there), the Red Robin purchase, yeah OK, and on the same day another Walmart.  I called Discover and it was for a Walmart in the Atlanta area.  Maybe the times were so close that they thought it impossible to be in Augusta and Atlanta so quickly?  They issued me a new card.  Ugh.  So many things go to that card.  Humans make me sad.

The thing with credit card theft is no one cares.  The credit card companies reverse the charges and the vendors eat it.  It’s sad.  No one goes after the perpetrators.  So who pays for all of these charge-offs?  I’m sure, we, the consumers.

Now for the doctor’s visit rant.

So Monday (5/12) I have a blood pressure follow up with the Physician’s Assistant, Mr. Karimi.  My appointment was for 7:30am.  I arrive at 7:30am.  At 7:50 I finally get escorted to the scale for check in.  I’m not in a great mood at this point.  How does the doctor’s office run 20 minutes behind so early in the morning?  Then to top it off, I have to step on a scale, ugh.  Moooooo.  So off to the exam room I go.  I wait and I wait and I wait.  I eventually hear Mr. Karimi in the room next to me and his patient won’t shut up about Christianity and the Jihad.  Dude, shut him up, schedule a coffee date with him, and get your ass into my room. 

I’m pretty fuming now; it’s 8:15.  So I’ve already been waiting a total of 45 minutes.  I go out into the hall to some assistant woman and vent.  I tell her I need to go.  I’ve been here a long time.  Yaddi, yaddi, yaddi.  She politely ushers me back into the exam room, telling me she’ll look into it or whatever she says in a ultra polite to make you forget that you’re mad tone and closes me back into the exam room.  Slick. Mr. Karimi wraps it up, says goodbye, a door opens, closes another opens but wait, it’s not mine.  It’s across the hall, but I can barely hear what’s being said. 

Finally, he comes into my room at 8:25am.  It’s a wonder my blood pressure checked out OK.  I finally got to leave at 8:35.  An hour later.

Now for the piglet rant.

So, I work at a large complex that has several sections and is occupied my several tenants.   Allstate, AXA Equitable, Aon Hewitt, etc.  The campus is owned and managed by Beco.  On a break, my work wife, Jessica, and I walk past the management office and see someone holding a 6 week old pig.  Really.   We chit chatted with the lady (Missy) holding the pig and it was going to be used as a “zonk” prize for a “Let’s Make a Deal” type game they were having at a meeting tomorrow.  Jessica and I told her we didn’t like that idea.  What if someone doesn’t want it, what if… etc, etc.  She agreed and didn’t know.

20140514_163851Above: Piglet with the owner’s English Bulldog, Kingsley.


We went back to our offices and I emailed BECO.  “Please reconsider using that pig as a loser prize. That's not advisable.  What will happen if that pigs is gifted to someone who doesn't want it?”  In the meantime, coworkers rallied me into going back to the management office to complain.  The rest of the story can be told by the owner’s email response to me and my response to him.  Copy/paste, here we go.

“We’re animal lovers and compassionate about their wellbeing.  It’s highly unlikely that anyone will actually take the piglet, so we prearranged with the breeder to reunite the piglet with its Momma after the event.  Thank you for sharing your concern.”

I replied (here’s where the story lies):

“Thanks Chris. Some how I became the spokesperson.  When a coworker (Jessica) and I spoke to Missy earlier she said she didn't know.  We expressed our concerns and Jessica gave Missy her phone number and said if the person didn't want it she'd find a home.  Missy agreed.  Another coworker, Deb, passed by as Missy went into the office.  We told her what was said to us and eventually that spread at our business.  Deb and I were chosen from our office to inquire again and explain our concerns. 

Once again Missy appeared.  I explained why we were concerned stating animals should never be given as prizes.  What if someone doesn't want it?  What if someone takes it but gets home and their mother, father or spouse says no and they set it free?  What if the spouse throws it from a car window (just happened to a kitten that a friend is a foster parent for)?  If they changed their mind would they know how to get in touch with someone to give it back?  Details like that.  Missy kept asking what my concern was.  Over and over.  Frustrating.

Finally Mercedes comes out and the first thing out of Missy's mouth is "they're afraid someone is going to throw it out of a car window".  To watch Missy handle Kingsley and us, you'd think you pay her a lot of money, she hates her job, but just muddles through.   Missy ROLLED her eyes to the guard at the desk (Deb spotted it while I spoke to Mercedes, I didn't see it) 

Anyway, Mercedes was friendly, bubbly and sincere assuring us that someone had a farm and plans were in place.  Our thoughts were "enough said".  We were content with the answer.  That's all we wanted to know.

Your answer differed a little from Mercedes but has the same gist.  Please make sure that if someone does take the pig, they have a place to bring it if they change their mind.” 

A day later I received an email from Mercedes. 

“Just wanted to follow up on our conversation from yesterday and to reiterate that here at BECO were all about the animals. Although Pinky the pig liked his big city living for one day, he went back to the farm a few minutes ago and is safe and sound. Attached are some pictures so you can see him happy at home.”

photo 1

/end rants

5-4-14 Sunday (Thirsty?)

Meanwhile, earlier in the week…

2014-04-25 004Above: I packaged some steaks in the freezer,and had a little fun with the labeling.  It was killing me to wait for Jim to see it.

Friday 4/25 – Sunday 4/27: An Augusta weekend!  Surprise!  We arrived Friday night, unpacked, cleaned ourselves up a bit and went out to the bar to meet up and socialize with some friends.  We had a great time. 

Saturday morning, I made egg mcmuffins of sort.  Using our microwave egg poacher, I assembled egg, cheese, and Canadian bacon on an English muffin.  They were delish.

Jim worked outside getting the motorhome ready to move.  He disconnected it, aired up the tires, etc and moved it to an empty lot.  Our friend Wesley borrowed our mower for his lot, mowed several lots near him and then did ours as well.  When done, we brought the RV to Wes’ dad, the mechanic, so that he can work on the generator.  We have him a list of mechanical things to repair.

2014-04-26 006Above: Wesley

For lunch and made some veggie burgers and fries.  That’s 2 meals I cooked in one day at the RV.  Typically unheard of.  We’re trying to spend less on eating out.  Besides, I wanted this big RV with the huge kitchen so I’d have room to cook. 

Saturday night 4 of us went to dinner at Mi Rancho.  Karaoke (not that great) + good friends + good food = a good time.

2014-04-26 012Above: Jeff, who did not want his picture taken.

2014-04-26 013Above: Craig

On Sunday, Jim built some stairs.  Actually, they were partially built and given to us by Robert and Brad in the campground.  Jim had to build supports to hold up the stairs as well as a landing at the top.

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Friday 5/2 – Sunday 5/4: Sometime earlier in the week, coworkers around me were coughing, sneezing, and all around sickly.  Naturally, I caught it.  Damn them!  I went on to Augusta anyway.  I felt pretty good on SaturDAY, Saturday night, not so much.  Jim went out, I stayed in at the RV.  It definitely wasn’t a great weekend for me.

Sunday night, at home, I had some feeling sick moments.  On Monday, I feel pretty rough.  I’m sure after a shower and such I would have felt fine to go to work but I opted to stay home.  Once I felt better, I did laundry, emptied the dishwasher, etc.  What a waste of a day off. 

A couple of weeks ago, while in Augusta, we went to Lowes. 

2014-04-12 001

6 water fountains?