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Friday, September 15, 2006


How am I exasperated this morning? Let me count the ways --

*** Blogger, once more living up to their "worth every penny" motto, was down completely when I first got up today. This sucked. As the diurnal period has crept with glacial velocity by, however, I've been gratified to see more and more of blogger's sites come back online. In fact, to date, every blogsite blog that I normally like to read has come back online -- except for mine. Repeated emailed pleas, exhortations, prayers, offers of vague, ill defined favors, and horrifying death threats to the Blogger No Help Team go unacknowledged; meanwhile, everyone in the universe is updating their blogs but me, and my statcounter remains resolutely at 0 for the day. We hates this. We hates it forever.

*** Stinkin' WizKids, just to torture me and for no other reason at all, has put a Supernova icon in their Figure Gallery. But when you click on it, there is nothing there. If I had an email address for whoever is responsible, I would be bombarding that person with death threats right now. So it's good I don't, because I gather that sort of thing is illegal nowadays here in the Land of the Free and the Home of the Brave.

*** I'm not getting the shit that laid SuperFiancee low, and I sincerely thank Whatever for that. And the love o' my life is getting better, for which endless celestial gratitude is in order and, in fact, ongoing. But I do have a relatively minor but deeply annoying head cold which is playing havoc with my regular respiration right now, in that my sinuses are entirely clogged, and drippy with it, too. Gnar.

*** We're moving to new cubicles at work over the weekend, for no sane reason anyone can devise, much less explain. This means all my cubicle crap has to be packed up by the time I leave tonight, as the humpbacks are coming in tomorrow to do the barge totin' and bale liftin'. I could be one of those humpbacks (I've been offered the overtime) but the bus don't run up here on weekends, and I'm not making SuperFiancee get up early on her Saturday off to drive me someplace I don't much want to be so I can, you know, shift boxes full of cubicle crap for five hours. Toil? Manual TOIL? I'd rather wear curlers.

*** One of our most crucial systems was offline all day at work. It's finally been fixed, but that was really annoying, too.

*** Old buddy Opus is being published online, which is annoying to me, because she's a better writer than I am, and thus, by the way the world clearly works, I should be more successful at it than she is. It's a principle clearly established since time immemorial, and reinforced a thousandfold under the Bush Administration, so I want to know, where's my Hollywood movie check? No, no, never mind that. Congratulations to Opus on a job well done, and I'll just continue to direct all my professional jealousy at John Rogers and Joss Whedon, neither of which should have their current jobs, because I want them and would do them better. No, wait. Worse. I'd do them worse. And therefore, I should have them. Yeah.

*** Conversations like this:

ME: Who am I speaking with, please?
THEM: The participant.
ME: May I have your name?
THEM: Janet.
ME: May I have your full name, please?
THEM: Janet... Trisglove.
ME: Thank you. For security purposes, can you please verify the home address on the account?
THEM: Well... I don't know what one you have. We just moved.
ME: What's your current address.
THEM: I don't know. We just moved here.
ME: [somewhat desperately] Can you verify the previous address?
THEM: I don't remember it. We don't live there any more, anyway.
ME: I... okay, can you verify the daytime contact number?
THEM: I don't know which one you have. It's different now, anyway. Do you want my cell phone number?
ME: ...sure...
THEM: I don't like to give that out.
ME: But... it... you... [deep breath] How can I help you?
THEM: Well, I tried to use my card and it didn't work. And I know there's money in the account.
ME: What did you try to purchase with the card?
THEM: Well, it was at Wal-mart.
ME: What, specifically, were you trying to purchase...
THEM: I don't remember specifically. But they were, you know, things I should be able to get with the account.
ME: Do you remember how much you were trying to run on the card?
THEM: Well, no, but I know there has to be that much in the account.
ME: Have you checked the balance?
THEM: No, but there has to be that much.
ME: I see. Well... can you verify your date of birth for me?
THEM: Why do you need to know that? That isn't even in my file.
ME: Ma'am, I need to verify two pieces of information before I can release any information. That's the law.
THEM: Well I just want to know why the card didn't work.
ME: Well, ma'am, I'm only hypothesizing at this point based on our relatively brief verbal interaction, but, if I had to guess, I'd assume it's because the last time you were having sex with your brother, father, uncle, or cousin, one or both or all four or five of you mistook the card for some form of birth control device and in the ensuing activities you somehow demagnetized the card.
THEM: What?
ME: It's just a guess. I could be wrong. Although I genuinely doubt that supposition.
THEM: Lemme talk to your supervisor.

Actually, I'd be a lot less exasperated if I could actually say things like that to participants. But up until the bit about my hypothesis, that was a pretty exact transcript of many of the calls I get here.

Well, okay, I made up the name.

*** SuperFiancee, as always, is fabulous and wonderful and beautiful and amazing and splendid and terrific and a joy forever and the best thing that has ever happened to me, and that's not one of the things that's exasperating me today, except that I'm here and not with her, which is where I'd really always rather be. But go read her Flashback Friday. It's hilarious. And will amply display yet again just why I like, admire, respect, and love her so.


At 3:07 PM , Blogger MJ Norton said...

The shut-out this morning was so broad I'd begun to think that maybe I missed a scheduled downtime notice, but then blogs would pop in and out of accessibility (this is from around 5am on past 8) before most started to become reliable again. Glad to see you're back.

The Supernova icon in the gallery was part of a run-up to putting whatever they're going to put in there today. There were suggestions/complaints from judges and venues that if they were going to push the official previews to Friday that they try to have them up by 3 or so EST so the info could be the buzz at that evening's events. Since Wizkids' people are mostly on Pacific time this meant that had to try to set things up long before the end of their workday.

With the icon going up and this phase starting, here's where I'll really start to feel the burn of trying to avoid set info.

At 4:10 PM , Blogger Highlander said...

Well, they blew the 3 o'clock deadline, the putzes. I have no idea how hard these people's jobs really are, but it's difficult not to believe that nearly anyone else, even several drunken iguanas, couldn't do them better.

I seriously have to wonder just how much of the inefficiency we seem to see coming from the company comes out of simple slacking. I mean, you have to think it's the kind of job where people screw around a lot.

Or at least, it's the kind of job where I would, anyway.

Just to help you feel the burn, I'll note that BoneMaster, or whatever his name is, has updated his 'confirmed' Supernova list with several new and surprising entries... and he took off the one that I'd mentioned to you was going to surprise and delight you. So I don't know WHAT that means.

At 4:40 PM , Blogger MJ Norton said...

To be fair, the 3pm deal was one of the suggestions from a judge, nothing anyone on the other side promised. I'm expecting whoever or whatever it is will be up shortly, as one of the mods said they're just waiting for the "art to come over" so they can post.

I know I'm going to catch the names long before the set releases, and I know that if I try to steer clear of every detail I'll eventually drop to my knees like a hooker at a Shriner's convention, so I'm now thinking I'm going to allow myself to look at Boneyard's list as a compensation for flatly avoiding the Supernova figure gallery.

Not a firm decision for today, but a likely one, and one that seems inevitable. I'll doubtless make a wearisome post of the decision once I've made it. ;)

Boneyard has occasionally, briefly, gotten a bum steer on one of the "confirmed" characters in a set, and having that corrected eight and a half weeks before the release seems in line with history. It's usually just one piece, and that character ends up showing up in one of the next two sets.

As for the situation inside Wizkids it's tough to say. They had some sharp personnel cuts just a few months ago and it appears that everyone who kept his job picked up new responsibilities in the belt-tightening, and almost everyone has to run around like a dedicated madman servicing an item that was either just released or is just about to.

Now that Horrorclix has launched (and done so with some success, it seems) and they have a little less than two weeks before a Mech Warrior release, there's a little time being freed up to get their ducks in a row for the gradual unveiling of Supernova.

Inquest's (or Scrye's?) October issue will feature the full pictorial and partial stats breakdown of the set, and is probably on schedule for what would have been a week or two before the original late October release. The pre-release events are October 28th, I believe, so one way or another the info on the entire set will be available to any who want to know within the next 6 weeks -- and that's on the outside.

At 6:23 PM , Blogger SuperFiancee said...

1) I figured the supernova icon with no information had been specifically a Mike Norton thing...;)

2) Not much surfing, so the blogger thing didn't affect me much.

3) Your phone conversation was hysterical and entirely too realistic...except the last part. Scary. I've had conversations like that. Just not repeatedly. For hours on end. ::shiver::

4) Hate that you're getting sick and I'm not as convinced as you that it's not "the crud". I hope you're right. I hope it's something that clears up quickly and easily.

5) Wishing you were here, too. Helping sort the hundreds of Magic cards I picked up today...;) Thank you for all your sweet words. I love you, too, my darling boy.

At 10:44 AM , Blogger Opus P. Penguin said...

I can't stop you from feeling jealous. But if it makes any difference, I didn't make enough to buy postage stamps from that piece and Associated Content basically will take anything, as long as it's coherently written and something they think will drive traffic to their site. In the whole of my writing and publishing life (some fifteen years or so) I've only sold one other piece, a novel excerpt for which I earned ten dollars and two copies of the magazine.

And re Blogger's mishegos - it sucks that you're having trouble, but the service is free, so what do you want?

Hope you're feeling better soon. That stuff sucks. Have you tried zinc lozenges? They work great for me. As long as you start within 48 hrs or so of the first symptoms.


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