OMG… the Customer Service…

Since it’s the end of the year, there are quite a few online sales that go on.  In addition, my credit card also have deals if I spend $X at a particular location, I get $Y back.  In this case, I had to spend $150 to get $30 back.  That is an effective cash rebate of 20%.  And so it happens, I needed some shoes and a fairly popular shoe brand had a sale.  I ended up ordering two pairs of shoes to be able to satisfy the spending requirements.  Each pair was shipped separately but to the same location (a UPS store).

A few days go by and I get a notification that both shoes have been delivered.  However, it turns out, only 1 of the shoe was delivered.  The remaining shoe was still in transit.  I waited two more days and it became apparent that 2nd pair would not be arriving.  I started to investigate the whereabouts of this 2nd pair by calling UPS.  This is where the fun begins…

UPS customer service rep (CSR) tells me that the package was apparently delivered to the wrong address.  Furthermore, the CSR says to start initiating a claim through the UPS.com website.  Ok fair enough.  I go to the CSR Portal and input the tracking number.  And I get an error saying that the tracking number cannot be used to file a claim.  WTF!?  So I called UPS back again and they kept transferring me for no real good reason as I was trying to explain the situation.  Eventually, I got to a person who investigated and said that the shoe brand placed a restriction on the tracking number to prevent customers from making any sort of claim.  My only recourse was to contact the shoe brand and not UPS.  Seriously? (╯°□°)╯︵ ┻━┻

And so I called the shoe brand.  After explaining the first part of my situation, the customer service rep responded with some sass responding with “why doesn’t the UPS just go back and pick up the package?” and “just log into UPS.com and go file a claim and get me that claim#.”  But after hearing that there’s some sort of hold preventing me from filing a claim, the rep’s sass disappeared and put me on hold.  I guess after consultation with while on hold, I received a fraud#.  The rep opened a fraud claim to have the fraud department investigate.

Ya I don’t know… ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

New Car

I’ve been driving my old car for over 10 years now.  During the last oil maintenance, the mechanic I go to said that any future repairs I needed might not be worth the cost.  Reading on the type of repair needed (new catalytic converter), this repair costs at least $3000 in parts which is more than the current value of the car (~$2500).  He strongly suggested I consider replacing the car.  The car still drives pretty well.  It retains its V6 power and acceleration and it’s engine is still in fairly good shape.

Looking for a new car, I realized that the advances in car “comforts” is pretty amazing.  You now have standard navigation package, bluetooth connectivity, rearview cameras, parking/proximity sensors, lane assists and even braking  sensor and assists!  In all fairness, the standard navigation is now being replaced with Apple CarPlay/Android Auto.  Going into the new car search, I knew what kind of options I absolutely wanted.   Unfortunately, many of the cars required additional packages to the base trim in order to have some of these options.

Anyways, I settled on an Acura.  I was offered a really good deal that was too good to pass up.  I enjoy driving it so far.  The acceleration and power is more responsive than my old car.  I’m still getting used to that rearview camera as well.  With all the options, I’m still learning about all the various sensor beeps and warning beeps.  The lane assists is pretty amazing and works well on straight road driving but not so much on curved roads.  I’ve since hit the 100 mile and 500 mile mark already.

One thing I do have to say is that it is a bit frustrating learning about all the different new electronics in the car.  The bluetooth connectivity was a little annoying as I expected a lot more.  But in retrospect, I think my expectations were a bit to lofty and unfounded.  The USB audio option however is still annoying and I’m still working on understanding what’s going on.  It apparently cannot play certain songs on a playlist BUT it’s able to play the song if I search for it manually.  I think I may end up having to just have a few folders that contain all the songs I want to listen via USB audio.  Fortunately, I’m OK with repeating a favorite song over and over again.

Safe Driving!

Botanical Roasters

November’s Angels Cup comes from Botanical Roasters. The beans come from Zambia’s Kateshi Ngoli which from Google appears to be a coffee estate.  Reading about the background of these estates, it sounds very similar to a self contained city/compound with housing, nurseries and classrooms — very cool.

Coffee00057

To be honest and I’ve said this before, coffee beans tend to smell very similar to each other.   I smelled a mix of nutty, earthy and berry aromas for these beans.  However, I noticed that after grinding the beans, the resulting ground looked very fluffy and light.  The ground beans looked significantly different than previous beans as scooped it out into the Aeropress.

Taking the first sip of my latte was amazing: sweet honey, chocolate, berry and even grape  flavors.  After that first sip, I ended up drinking the rest of it in pretty much one continuous long drink.  It was really that good.  I haven’t had a latte where guzzled it down in one shot.

Caffe Vita Roasting

This is a bonus coffee bag that I bought from a recent trip.  It’s a collaboration between Caffe Vita Coffee Roasting and Theo Chocolate. I’m not sure what prompted the collaboration but it was worth trying.  Chocolate has been known to go well with coffee.

Coffee00053

This is blend of various coffees from Indonesia, Central America and South America.  When I first opened the bag, I got very strong chocolate, earthy, nutty aromas.  It reminds me of the type of aromas you might smell from Kona coffee as well.  From the website, I have no idea what “fruit leather or cigar box” would even smell like.

After making my latte, the first sip always surprises me.  It honestly tastes similar to when I make my latte using Kona beans.  The chocolate flavors hits my tongue first followed by hints of intermingling berry flavors with each sip.  There is also a slight bitterness with each sip but it varies from day to day.  The level of bitterness also varies with the level of nutty aftertaste that lingers at the back of the tongue as well.

Anyways, I’m pretty satisfied with this blend.  It’s a different flavor profile than the usual single origin beans that I get from Angels cup.  Next up is the November offering.

Plant Based Diet?

This Netflix documentary “The Game Changers” makes a very compelling case why switching to a vegetarian diet is good for general health, sports performance and recovery, and even the environment.

The evidence presented throughout the documentary makes a compelling case as to why a plant based diet is significantly better.  Some of the people promoting the rationale as to why plant diet is better include…

  • Blood test of subjects that ate meat one meal, then plant based the following day.
  • Firefighters on a 1 week program with average cholesterol drop by 20 and average weight loss of 6 pounds.
  • Weightlifters (Schwarzenegger), football players (select players from Titans), Olympians (a American track cyclist, Australia sprinter)
  • Doctors and specialists who talk about the evidence (of course!)

I have to admit… what the documentary is saying is pretty convincing.  But what about a diet full of fruits and plants compared to just plants only?

Public Impeachment Inquiry

I’ve been thinking about what Dems messaging should be throughout the public impeachment inquiry.

First and foremost, regardless of the party in power, the Dem’s message is a concern that a president is seeking foreign aid for internal political gains. Followed by a simple question of… Do you want your president to be seeking foreign help to discredit political rivals?

Actually you know… This seeking help for political gains sounds very similar to what the “dictators” do. And Trump respects dictators… Like the North Korean Kim Jong Un… Coincidence? Hmm…