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5:17 a.m. - 2002-06-06

MR. IMPATIENT IS AN ASSHOLE

My Gawd.

As far as yesterday's entry goes...for those of you who didn't read my rebuttal on my message page, I'll print it here...

"Keep in mind ... I didn't say "ALL PEOPLE WHO PLAY ONLINE GAMES OR D&D ARE GEEKS". There are plenty of people who can play games and still live an active, healthy life.

It's when the game takes over the player to the point that he turns his back on the Real World and/or kills himself ... THEN yeah...pardon my French, but that's a GEEK in my opinion.

I have trouble understanding certain things in life. I don't understand suicide. I can understand the circumstances that lead most people to suicide...depression, low self esteem, etc. But to kill yourself over a game?? Kids, I don't care WHAT you want to call that ... I call it "stupid".

If you're a RPG fan or use your computer to play games, more power to you. Everyone uses their computers for different reasons and that's cool. I don't think you're a geek for playing games.

...Just don't kill yourself when you don't win."


Well...I've gone and done it.

I now officially have a reputation as an asshole at my vet's office.

This past Monday, I had to take Andrew to daycare and Maggie to the vet for boarding.

Usually, Susie and I split the duties, one takes Andrew, the other takes the dog. But she had a meeting out of town and it was up to me to take care of both of them.

It wasn't a problem dropping them off.

But at the end of the day, I went to pick Andrew up and then drove to the Vet's office.

Andrew and I got to the vet's at 5:25. I signed in and checked the box "Picking up Pet".

Here's what happens each afternoon...I walk in, sign in, the receptionist gets on the intercom and says "We need Maggie May brought to the front, please", they bring Maggie up and we leave. I'm keeping a running tab there, so it's not like I have to pay...nothing. Just bring me my dog and we'll leave.

So Andrew's walking around, petting all the dogs in the waiting room. All the dogs are friendly and they're kissing him and he's laughing. Ha ha. All in good fun.

At 5:30, the receptionist, Lorraine...a woman in her 50s has yet to call for Maggie. That's okay...there's two other people in the waiting room before me and she hasn't helped them either.

Here's one thing I don't like about Lorraine ... she seems to be a nice woman, but she doesn't multi-task. If she's on the phone, she only helps the person on the phone. If she's printing someone's bill, that's all she does.

It takes NO BRAINS to pick up the phone receiver and say "We need Maggie May brought to the front, please." None whatsoever. This can be done while ringing someone else up. Or while putting her pencils in a cup. Or whatever the hell she does back there. It takes less than five seconds to do and BAM! She's totally knocked her line of customers down one person.

Lorraine doesn't do this.

I also don't like the way that Lorraine gives priority to people on the phone rather than people standing there in person with money in hand. That's always been one of my pet peeves in customer service. A few weeks ago, this really got under my skin when Lorraine was on the phone with someone who wasn't familiar with our city and was trying to give directions to the clinic. She was giving them slowly and had to keep repeating herself. Rather than put the person on hold, she painstakingly took ten minutes to discuss the person's pet over the phone, gave them directions and took her sweet assed time doing it while five customers stood in the waiting room, getting more and more impatient with her.

Afterwards, Lorraine hung up the phone, laughed and casually apologized to everyone for making them wait.

WE SHOULD NOT HAVE TO HAVE WAITED, LORRAINE. YOU SHOULD HAVE PUT THE WOMAN ON HOLD OR TOLD HER TO CALL BACK IN 15 MINUTES. YOU HAVE PEOPLE STANDING HERE WITH MONEY IN THEIR HANDS AND PLACES TO BE. DAMMIT LORRAINE....THINK!!!

5:40. Lorraine has waited on the other two people in the waiting room, but not me. They have complicated requests. One's dog had been operated on that day and they were waiting for a room to come open so they could talk to the doctor and see their dog. I don't remember what the other person was there for, but it was a whole lot more complicated than having their dog brought to the front of the office.

Meanwhile, Andrew's wanting to play Hide and Seek and is using the entire building to hide, while I'm chasing him around like Harrison Ford trying to find his wife in "Frantic".

At 5:45, a woman walks through the door, walks up to the counter and tells Lorraine she needs heartworm pills. Lorraine starts to wait on her.

I lose it. But I was very careful because the vet is an old acquaintance of mine and I didn't want to burn any bridges here.

"Excuse me," I said. "But could you call Maggie May to the front, please? I've been waiting for 20 minutes for her."

"Certainly," Lorraine says. She waits on the customer, gives her the heartworm pills, waits for her to write her check, rings her up, prints out her receipt, tells her to have a nice day, admires her choice of perfume, stands there for a few seconds taking in the aroma of the perfume THEN picks up the phone receiver and says "We need Maggie May to the front, please."

Some kid brings Maggie May to the front. Please.

Lorraine apologizes. "Sorry you had to wait, Uncle Bob."

I ALMOST said "Me too." But I said "That's okay" and left.

Now then...

EVER SINCE THAT MOMENT...I am now known as "Mr. Impatient" around the Vet's office.

The next morning, Lorraine's working again. As soon as I walk in with Maggie, she leaps up, comes from behind the counter, takes Maggie's leash and says "Come on Maggie...we CERTAINLY don't want to have to make your Daddy wait today!"

Oh. My. Gawd.

I was embarrassed. But I smiled, thanked her and left.

That afternoon, I came to pick her up and the same thing happened. Lorraine JUMPED over other people to make sure that I got served first, bringing Maggie to the front. Please.

It's almost like she's pegged me as the guy who simply can't wait 20 minutes for his dog while he's trying to control a 19 month-old kid and she's busy gabbing on the phone to telemarketers or some shit.

The last four times I've been in there, she's treated me like a King. It may be that she's trying to make amends for screwing me over, but I don't want special attention. That's not my gig. I just want my dog in a timely fashion. That's it.

It sucks being known as the asshole that comes in every day that wants the entire office to kiss his ass.

I'm sure that reputation has its perks.

But I don't want it.


Went to Outback Steakhouse for dinner last night.

I like Outback. It's nice. The food's good, service is good, everything about it is good.

NOT GREAT.

But good.

Yet...in my city, this place is CONSTANTLY busy. There's always a line of people waiting outside to get in. It's the Studio 54 of steakhouses in this town.

And it's not just my town. Every Outback I've ever seen has lines of people waiting to get in. It's like they're showing "Star Wars Episode II: Attack of the Clowns" in there.

I just don't get it. This Outback has been open for at least five years. Still...every single night...a line.

We sat in the smoking section last night because the wait to get a seat in non-smoking was 30 minutes.

At 6 p.m. on a Wednesday night.

Hellooooo??? This town must have umpteen zillion steakhouses because our state is number one for obese fat bastards who eat steaks like most people eat popcorn ... by the handful.

So why does everyone go to Outback?!?

It's a mystery, Pedro. And one I haven't been able to solve.

We went there because we had a gift certificate that I bought at my silent auction that I never used.

At the end of the meal, Susie discovered that the gift certificate expired in 2001.

She carefully changed the 2001 to 2002 and we scurried out of there like a couple of hobos.

Andrew got his first taste of honey mustard dipping sauce for his chicken fingers last night and loved it.

It was so cute watching him dip EVERYTHING in his sauce and carefully eat it.

Actually, it was just nice that he sat there quietly and ate his food without needing to run around the restaurant and stare at people while we tried to eat.

He became fascinated with a guy in a wheelchair a few tables down from us. He stared at him like he was Steve from "Blues Clues".

Finally, when the guy got done eating, he wheeled over to Andrew and asked him what his name was.

Andrew said "Shoes".

The man laughed, Andrew laughed and Andrew tried to give him a chicken finger, freshly dipped in honey mustard.

The guy politely declined the invite to eat grub from my kid's greasy hands and left.

He was Andrew's first physically challenged friend.

I came home and pulled Andrew's Baby Book down from the shelf, but they don't have a space for "Baby's first physically challenged friend".

Baby's first haircut...check.

Baby's first tooth...check.

Baby's first exposure to catching Daddy surfing the web for porn when he thought baby was asleep on the den floor...check.

But nothing about Baby's first physically challenged friend.

What up wi' dat?


Drove out to the new house after dinner.

Two guys were sitting on the sand that's inside the cinder blocks that frame our house, just chilling.

I almost yelled at them to get out of my house. But it's not exactly my house. Hell...it's not exactly a house yet.

Plus, they were sitting in the future garage portion of the house, so it's not like they were sitting in my bedroom.

Plus, it looked like they were workers waiting on a ride out of there. So they had probably been busting their nuts all day to make my dream home and I really shouldn't bitch them out for that.

They have the capabilities of really messing with my house if I get on their bad side. Burying a bag of skunks in the foundation or something.

I don't need that shit, buster.


My sister emailed me, all giddy because she got in touch with an old boyfriend from her junior high school days.

The guy's name is Mark Harden.

His sister's name is Marcia Gay Harden...Oscar-winning actress. You may have heard about her if you're into Oscar-winning movies.

Anyway, my sister was watching "The View" the other day and Marcia was on and talking about her brother's website, since he's a big time photographer now going by his real first name and not Mark.

Julie sent me the web address. I checked the site out and it had an email link to the guy. So I told my sis to email him and say "What's up, remember me?"

She was nervous and didn't want to do it, because the guy's sister is a big time actress and he probably doesn't have time for girls he dated in Junior High.

Basically, I wrote the initial email for her.

She sent it to him and got a response from him. He's all jazzed to hear from her and seems to be a really nice guy.

She's emailing me every single correspondence she's had with the guy.

This was okay at first. But now she's really getting obsessive about it. She's saying stuff like "Remember when we went to that party where that girl started crying because her boyfriend broke up with her?"

And he's writing back "Uhhhhhhhh....no."

My sis.

She's a freak when it comes to memory.

She obviously didn't smoke the copious amounts of pot that her older brother did.


Here's a trivia fact for ya....

Marcia Gay Harden and Greg Kinnear both went to our school in Greece at the same time. Although Marcia is about seven years older than Greg.

Pretty wild, huh?

Okay.

Maybe not.


I'm tired and have meals to make for my family.

Gotta go.

Peace.

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