It is pretty much no secret that these folks are not going to be making my favorites list anytime soon, but recent events take the cake.
I live nearly two hours from the nearest Deseret Book. (Yes, Mom, you'd refer to this as "the mission field.") For one of our crafty-day projects, in October, if you recall, we made these photo album Sacrament quiet books. I wrote a little doctrinal thing about the sacrament, simplified for young kids, to match the pictures in Greg Olsen's small picture kit called "Images of the Savior." You put the words and pictures mounted into a photo album. The result is quite sweet. These cost about $8 each to make and several sisters signed up for multiples in order to give them to grandkids for Christmas.
Eighteen kits ended up being ordered. As soon as I had the money, two weeks before the Souper Saturday, I got on-line and ordered what I wanted. I put the money in my account and then I waited. And waited. And waited.
The day before I needed them, I called Deseret Book. Sorry, they are on backorder. Hmm . . . and you didn't let me know this over my email because? I mean, isn't that the POINT of having such technology? Not to worry, they assured me, they will be here in mid-November.
I passed on that information and when I had nothing by the 20th of November, and also realized they had never charged my card to begin with, I called again. Sorry they are on backorder. Again? Do you ever tell people anything? Well, she said sweetly (she is probably somebody's grandmother), I can tell you that our next shipment will be here December 14th and that we will FedEx them to you right away. OoooKaaaaaaaay. Oh, and you have until the 4th to cancel the order if you need to.
I spent a good chunk of the rest of that day calling the women who had signed up for the project to find out if they wanted me to cancel their orders and they could just get them at DB next time they were there? I could refund money? You know the drill. It was a huge headache.
Then, Saturday, I went to the temple with a friend who was getting her endowment. It was a lovely day, if a bit hectic. (Plantboy and I went together and left the kids for a few hours with a friend that moved there from our ward. It turned out to be an 8 hour round trip. And while it seems really sacrificial and righteous for the temple to be such an effort, I mostly just grumble and wish it was closer.) On a whim, we found the Deseret Book and hunted all over for the pictures.
I think the pictures are on backorder because the Portland Store is hoarding at least 250 of these things.
Very cleverly, I put 18 of these babies on my credit card. Plantboy, acting as the voice of reason for a change, said, "are you sure you can cancel the other?" Oh, yes, I assured him, I have until the fourth. But this is perfect. Everyone will now get them well in time for Christmas and I don't have to deal with it any more.
Sunday I took an hour and half to deliver them. Why so long? At every stop I was asked to do something. Each request was prefaced with, "I'm so glad you dropped by! I've been meaning to call you . . . " Monday I crashed big time. Don't even ask me how many hours I read or what kind of cheesy re-read romance novels I had my nose stuck into. (Okay, one of my selections was Twilight; and no, my opinion has NOT changed.)
Yesterday morning, I opened my e-mail to find the following cheery message from Deseret Book, "You're order: qty 18 "Images of the Savior" has been shipped!"
How is the h*** is November 25th the equivalent of December 15??? By what stretch of the imagination is "you have until December 4th to cancel" the equivalent of them sending the cards Sunday night? When I called, the grandmotherly voice on the other end apologized about 400 times, all the while repeatedly telling me that there is no way that a representative from Deseret Book would have given me an exact shipping date and then gave me a crash course in the logistics of DB's ordering structure. She also emphasized how unreliable ordering over the Internet was and that they would be happy to take a phone order any time. Thanks for that. She did, however, graciously offer to send me a return slip. Here is how this will play: I get the order; I wait for the return labels; I repackage the order so that it doesn't say "FedEx" anymore; I drag my pre-schooler and toddler to the post office to mail the thing; I wait for the order to clear through DB and THEN I get refunded. Oh, yeah, my checking account SO needed the $80 hit four weeks before Christmas.
I must go bake. It will help to ease some of my anger at the universe. On the upside, I caught Tiny Fey as a pirate on Sesame Street this morning. She said that they needed to come up with some words that began with a pirate's favorite letter.
Yes, Yes, I thought it was "RRRRRRRRRRR" too.
But no, Tina argues, pirates love F-words. Well, that seems appropriate too.
Gratitude. Gratitude. Must remember to be grateful . . . .