April 15, 1997

Dear Diary:

Weather today -- too early to tell
Mood today -- Not bad all things considered
Fly count for yesterday -- 0
HF -- 73646362%

Rudy is back online with a working phone again! YAY! We talked tonight on the phone for 45 minutes (old habits die hard, it seems) and it was wonderful. We also spent a couple hours on IRC, where he and Cardigan finally "met" for the first time. I was in heaven, as these are both very special men to me. The only missing were Scott, Jeannette, who is ill with a nasty cold/sore throat right now :( and Paul.

Other than that, yesterday was kind of the pits. I had to turn on "bitch mode" when dealing with Harbor Chrysler/Dodge about getting my car repaired. I have extended warranty, "bumper to bumper" coverage (which is the biggest case of misrepresentation I've ever heard) on my beast of an automobile, but the bolt that fell out of the driver's seat (causing the seat to fall back into a fully reclined position, where it adamantly stayed) apparently isn't part of said warranty. Now I am thankful that when this little mishap occurred, I was parking rather than driving. My seat suddenly going into a reclining position while doing sixty miles an hour on the freeway could have caused some slight problems... like potential death to myself or others when I lost control and caused a wreck. I viewed this whole thing as a safety issue, even a potential recall situation and wasn't about to fork out the $118 Harbor Chrysler/Dodge wanted to fix it. I mean, c'mon... aside from the principle of the thing, how hard is it to put one little bolt on in an area that I examined and is visually and physically accessible without ripping the seat out first? They wanted $59 just to *look* at it. No dice. But the car was left there and plan were laid to foil their greed.

First I called my father, the Grand Master of Automotive Tinkering, who declared the entire situation to be "bullshit." He suggested I contact the national service agents about this and make sure that 1) this bolt thing really isn't covered under my mightly expensive extended warranty and 2) that they are aware this is a safety issue and that they would do well to repair it at no charge in exchange for my silence on the shabby quality of their product (I'm one of those folks who has no qualms whatsoever about alerting every consumer group/interested media party I can when things like this happen). Interestingly, while I had my dad on one line, the second line rang and it was Harbor Chrysler/Plymouth with the news that they could now do the work for $89. I told them I had my attorney on the other line and to please hold while I consulted with him. *evil grin* I went back to the first line and reported this to my father, already knowing my 'attorney's' advice would be to tell the guy to stick it in his ear. But I let the service guy hang for a few minutes then went back and told him my attorney had advised me to contact the national service center and I would authorize nothing including the $59 "look at it" fee until I had done so. I hung up on the poor fool, said goodbye to my father and placed the call to the toll free number.

So after being on ignore for nearly half an hour, I got through to the national service center. They verified the part and labor is not part of the warranty, to which I replied, "Well, the seat and the bolt are definitely located between the front and rear bumpers. Don't you think the term 'bumper to bumper warranty' is a bit of a misnomer?" They really weren't amused. I also pointed out that I really do wonder what the factory warranty would have covered, since nothing that ever goes wrong with my car seems to be covered under the extended warranty. The representative to whom I was speaking has either heard this train of thought enough times that he's blase about it or he just failed to see the total absurdity in the whole situation.

He did, however, realize that he had an irate woman on the line who was talking attorney consultations and other unpleasantries, and wasted no time in transferring me to the national customer relations center (where I didn't have to hold and listen to Muzack that sounded like a crappy midi file at all). I was connected immediately and the agent with whom I spoke grasped the implications of this little bolt failure immediately. He asked for the name and phone number of the dealership where my car was, checked that there were no recalls or bulletins out about this particular problem, and asked me to hold for a couple minutes. Within five minutes he was back on the line with the news that the problem would be fixed at no charge to me. Score one for the law firm of Dad & Daughter and my ability to be exceedingly polite while still not be willing to budge an inch (also known to my friends as "Ice Goddess mode"). So the wheels are home, no money was spent and I got to let out some frustration by being a bitch/ice goddess for a bit.

This whole thing, along with some other not so great news, set off a migraine, which didn't help matters. Not a great day, but a delightful evening spent with loved ones. I did get a few goodies added to my site, including two new pages in the Scrap Book and a new page of poetry by Paul. Also added a few awards to my awards page, applied for membership in the webring Archipelago and did miscellaneous updates, etc.

[several hours later]

Just got this email regarding the Archipelago webring:

Thank you for being interested in Archipelago. Your pages do not meet the standards as laid out in http://phyv02.phy.vanderbilt.edu:8000/www/felix/archipelago.html due to: -- Too graphics intensive on the journal page. -- Journal entries not segregated from other material. -- Navigation between entries and archives confusing. I appreciate your interest in Archipelago. If you choose to make alterations to your journal that you feel make it eligible in the future for inclusion, please write again. Thank you, Lucy Huntzinger lucy@well.com

Is it just me or does this one sound reminiscent of the DNA Elect ring and the People Chase? I'm quite glad to be excluded. When I read the requirements, I did not "get" that this is another elitist webring, which I believe is contrary to the entire spirit of the Webring Organization. I must admit, the third item cracks me up. How confusing is it to use my little navigational bar to pull up Elly's Diary Archives and just jump right over there? Or for that matter, to access it from the Directory of Pages?

I have, actually, been thinking about a major overhaul of my entire site. But even if I do so, and I meet these inane qualifications, I shan't be applying for membership. I have no desire to further the goals of Internet elitists. But I'll tell you what. Since it's so *confusing* using my navigational system, here's a link to the archives:

Elly's Diary Archives


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Copyright (c) 1997 Elaine M. Jordaan

This page last updated May 3, 1997