Tuesday, February 21, 2006

New pic of me. I dispense these like three times a decade so...

Three things I despise about my job.

1) Being asked "can I ask you a question?" Well, sure, but you really ought to ask me if you can ask if you can ask me a question. Then, just to be positive, you should ask me if you can ask me if you can ask me if you can ask me a question.

2) Asking "how many feet do you need" and the customer looks back like a dog that's just been shown a card trick. But wait, there's more! The answer that invariably follows is "Gee, maybe 25 feet? Do you think that'll be enough?"

To which my reply is always "definitely."

This is my favorite part! For about two seconds they have this sort of internal battle where they can't decide whether to get mad at me for pulling an answer out of my ass about something I know nothing about or at themselves for asking such a stupid fucking question.

3) Affected ignorance. What is this prideful, stubborn insistence on not understanding technology?

Had this woman in a few weeks ago lamenting the demise of that old chestnut; the VHS recorder. She really needed one to tape her TV shows. So I figured, "what the hell" and started to explain that a DVD recorder might be a good solution because DVDs were smaller, cheaper, easier to navigate and the 5,000th play would be as sharp as the first if cared for properly. I didn't get five words into the comparison before she interrupted me with "I'm not a technology person."

I almost said "that's probably OK since nobody asked you to fix one."

Saying you can't learn to press two buttons like a trained monkey because you're not a "technology person" is kind of like saying you can't drive because you aren't a mechanic.

One woman begged off comprehension by claiming she "wasn't a technology queen." Well what exactly is a technology queen? I really want to know. Are there technology princes and kings? How about technology jesters? I bet they'd be funny.

This sort of exchange isn't exactly uncommon but what really set her apart was when I made a parallel between audio tapes and audio CDs. I began by pointing out the "next track" feature of a CD vs. the hit-or-miss fast-forward annoyance of a tape when she interrupted me to explain she not only never used CDs but was completely unaware of this ability.

Ok. So a CD player was sitting right in front of me. I pressed the "next track" button. "See how I can skip from one song to the next immediately instead of having to press fast-forward and guess, later, rinse, repeat?"

Now she seemed flustered because she clearly understood the concept, she couldn't find a way to explain why this concept was confusing, but if she admitted that she "got" the idea then she will have lost her claim to "not a technology person." Heavens to fucking Betsy.

This concept baffles me. She wasn't stupid. It's like a badge of honor for some people. Look, I don't expect you people to know this shit off the top of your head but I have a hard time respecting your ignorance-as-badge-of-honor mentality.

A guy came in recently and asked how to hook up his DVD player. I pointed out the yellow, red and white cables on the back. "Just connect the white jack on the DVD player to the white jack on the TV with the white cable, then the same for the yellow and red." He expressed confusion, said he wasn't a "techie type."

"Sir, have you ever seen a coloring book?"

You laugh. That's what I said.

Me, I'm actually doing halfway decent. Could be better, could be worse. The podcast is picking up steam but trying to do something original, something other than chase the parked media, that's harder than it looks.

Here's a bone.

Last month the Army Corps of Engineers awarded Halliburton subsidiary Kellogg Brown & Root a $385 million contract to construct detention centers somewhere in the United States, to deal with "an emergency influx of immigrants into the U.S., or to support the rapid development of new programs," KBR said.

Later, the New York Times reported that "KBR would build the centers for the Homeland Security Department for an unexpected influx of immigrants, to house people in the event of a natural disaster or for new programs that require additional detention space."



Anonymous said...

That's a good pic of you!

:) We'll (probably) be up sometime this week. Call me sometime, damn you.



Anonymous said...

Nice pic! (I swear, I haven't forgotten the books, I just don't know which box Tim packed them in, so I have to look tonight. So sorry for taking so friggin long.)

Anonymous said...

What a hottie!!!

Denise said...

Uh-oh-- am I going to see a blog report on my cell phone shopping? Oh well, I'm tough. Bring it on!

I'm just glad you didn't ask me how many feet. "DO I LOOK LIKE A NUMBERS PERSON? Two-- that's all I got. How 'bout two?"

Thanks for all your help. Very fun to meet you.

Jason Nobody said...

No, you were actually fun. Those are rare.