Doing Too Much

A Short Story:

Back when I was a student at the Miami Ad School, they’d bring in a weekly “Industry Hero” (someone working in advertising or something adjacent) to do a sort of Ted Talk for the student body. Afterwards, the person would stick around to teach the “Heroes” class, where they’d assign a week-long project based on their specific area of expertise. Most of these “Heroes” were former Ad School alum.

We had a few professional photographers as guest “Heroes.” I noticed that most of them used Canon cameras and products, and so did most of the students. I had a Nikon. The Miami Ad School was sort of like going to Hogwarts, but instead of visiting Diagon Alley for a wand, animal companion and magical broomstick, you’d instead go to Best Buy for a MacBook, Adobe Suite and a DSLR camera.

Back to the point, there was one “Hero” photographer who was an older gentleman one week and he happened to use Nikon products. One student asked, “Why do you use Nikon over Canon?” As if he were using the wrong camera. His answer was great, he said, “Nikon makes lenses and telescopes. Canon makes printers. Would you rather take pictures with a telescope or a printer?” As a fellow Nikon-user I thought that was a pretty sweet answer. All of the Canon folks thought the guy was a big D-hole.

I chose Nikon because (years earlier) looking at DSLR cameras with my friend we asked, “What’s the difference?” We were told, “Nikon is better for photos of stuff, while Canon is better for people.” Is that true? I don’t know, but I do know that I prefer to take photos of stuff (mountains, outdoors, oceans and cities), because any time you take a picture of a person they immediately say, “Let me see,” and “Uh, I hate it!”

Animals and babies are cool to take pictures of because they don’t do that. So, why am I telling you this story? I started thinking about companies and brands that work in multiple industries, and how it always seems weird when seeing a company’s name on some product knowing what unrelated product they also create.

Too Many Things:

For example, Yamaha makes musical instruments, but also motor vehicles*. When I was a kid there was a car company named Daewoo, at the same time my friend’s TV in his room was made by Daewoo. Dove makes chocolates and soaps — ok, I googled it and those are two different Doves, but it’s still confusing — it would be odd if one Dove product went inside and one went outside of your body, right?

*After some more googling I found out that Yamaha Music and Motors are two separate companies, but originated and are owned from the same mothership.

At the movie theater the other day I noticed the urinal pad read “Royal Company” and I thought I hope that’s not what RC in RC Cola stands for, because I don’t want my urinal pads coming from the same factory as my soda. I don’t drink RC Cola, but if I did and this were true it would have most definitely changed my soda drinking habits.

There are companies like Sony and Microsoft that have gaming consoles, computers, TVs and all types of divisions. Samsung makes TVs, appliances and all sorts of electronics. These are all in the same sector so that doesn’t really bother me.

I started thinking of people I know, especially fellow castmates from my improv theater. We all have different jobs and backgrounds, but that’s what makes us funny when we’re put on stage together to make stuff up. We have lawyers, accountants, bankers, firefighters, teachers, designers, writers and more… No Doctors though, doctors are never funny. If you have a funny doctor, you need a new doctor. Ken Jeong (aka Mr Chang – Community and Leslie Chow – The Hangover movies) was a funny doctor once and he had to leave that profession behind to become a successful actor/comedian instead.

I for one wear many different hats each day. I work as an accountant during the day, I freelance as a writer, copywriter, photographer and graphic designer sometimes. I write and create content for my two blog/sites (this one and myVGBC.com) each week. I also sometimes make ice cream, banana pudding and sweet treats to sell to people (Ferdi’s Ice Cream — returning soon?). You can also catch me on stage at Just the Funny making people laugh every once in a while. Do any of these take away from the others? I don’t think so.

While multiple separate companies can be owned by one singular brand/company, that doesn’t mean the same two people are working on each product. It just means that the executives (aka Overlords) running the show are watching over everything. These smaller companies are just operating under one bigger umbrella, but separately. As long as you trust one of those companies, I’m pretty sure you can give the others a chance. At least until they prove you wrong. We are all more than just one thing, and I guess companies and brands can be too.

The main thing though is to definitely keep the toilet stuff and food stuff separate. Urinal pad and soda manufacturing don’t belong in the same building, warehouse, city or even state… Ever!

Same First Name

During my childhood there was a point where my best friend and I shared the same name. The weird part is we not only shared the same first name, “Fernando,” we also had the same last name “Rodriguez.”

It was fine though because he went by “Nando” and I went by “Ferdi” (as you know because of the name of this site). We also had different middle names, so no big deal (NBD).

Sometimes when two people meet with the same first name, someone stupid might say something like, “Oh, which one is the better one.” — and by “someone stupid” I mean ME, because I always say there’s a Good Rick and a Bad Rick in my life, and those two Ricks know which is which.

Unless one of the two people with the same first name refers to themself in the third person during day-to-day tasks (like The Rock used to) there should be no problem. It’s not a problem until someone else shows up.

Think about it. How many times a day do you call yourself by your own name — only if you’re introducing yourself to someone new, telling a telemarketer that you are yourself over the phone or ordering a Starbucks drink (but most people use a fake name at Starbucks anyways).

The problem comes when other people are around. When other non-[your name] people are around they are going to refer to you and the other person by that same name. Of course, there are always nicknames, last names, initials and other ways to refer to people other than by their first name.

I rarely call anyone I know by their true first name. I’ve always made up nicknames so that I don’t forget people’s real names and make them feel forgettable. I don’t even call my own sister by her real name.

I feel like this name problem may be sort of the same as being a twin. Twins know that they aren’t the other twin, the only problem is when other people are around and they start getting confused as to which twin is which. Also, twins are tricky and can always pull the old switch-a-roo on you, so be careful with twins (we all know about the Switch-a-roo thanks to Tia and Tamera from Sister, Sister).

In middle school we had three Danielas in my class. Three Danielas who were all friends. We collectively decided that they would go by Dani A, Dani B and Dani E (based on their last names).

Just don’t ever be a triplet or more than that because that would just get down right confusing for the entire world.

And now I leave you with this to explain the picture I chose for this article, in case you don’t get it…

Why 3D Movies?

There was a time, back in the late 00s (if that’s what you call the time between 2005-2010?) that some movies were also being released in 3D. And for some reason, I chose to watch many of these movies in 3D. It wasn’t until James Cameron’s Avatar was released that we learned what 3D could be. I watched Avatar in theaters at least three times (once in IMAX 3D).

I’m going to break up this post into two distinct periods of 3D:
Pre-Avatar (before December 18th, 2009)
and Post-Avatar (after December 18th, 2009).

Pre-Avatar: Watching 3D movies was great. Back when I was a kid some movies were released in “3D Vision,” which meant wearing some goofy red and blue glasses. Most of these usually featured some type of gag where a character might throw something at the audience (as seen in Muppet Vision 3D at Walt Disney World, multiple times).

In the year 2005, we saw the beginning of the 3D BOOM! In 2005, the number of 3D movie releases wasn’t that crazy, but each year it continued to grow — exponentially. By 2009, most of the big box office releases were converted into 3D — most likely for bigger box office revenue (3D tickets cost a few dollars more). People were watching these movies in 3D because we didn’t know any better.

Welcome to Pandora

Post-Avatar: At the very end of 2009, Avatar was released. The 3D in Avatar was a totally different type of 3D. James Cameron created some new future-Japan cameras that would create an immersive experience (especially in IMAX theaters). Whether the movie Avatar was good or not, it definitely pushed 3D technology forward. (The world is still waiting on that James Cameron Aquaman movie, starring Vinny Chase — #ReleaseTheCameronCut!).

From that point on most studio movies were released in 3D. 3D televisions became a thing in people’s homes — people were sitting on their couch with goofy 3D glasses on while watching TV. 3D versions of Blu-rays were being sold. And of course, every Marvel movie had a 3D option.


For a while I thought, I guess I have to watch everything in 3D now. But at some point it was too much, I made a choice. I had decided to only watch movies in 3D if they were filmed specifically for 3D — not converted to 3D in post-production as an afterthought. I also began thinking this way of IMAX movies, Was it filmed with IMAX cameras? Anything Christopher Nolan is usually filmed with IMAX cameras.

In recent years, I thought 3D movies had mostly gone away — or maybe I had been avoiding them? Then of course, the theaters shut down for most of 2020 and some of 2021 (thanks to the pandemic). The other day when picking out tickets for Black Widow and the return of the MCU to the big screen I noticed they had a 3D showing. We went with IMAX (non-3D), but it was weird that the 3D was in a normal, small theater.

We’re now at a point where it’s not about 3D, it’s about IMAX, DOLBY VISION and DOLBY ATMOS (big sound). However, James Cameron is back in his movie lab creating the next two big Pandoran Adventures, Avatar 2 and Avatar 3. And when these come out, in an even more immersive 3D I feel like the film industry is going to go through another 3D renaissance, but let’s hope that’s not the case.

I feel like a 3D experience is a fun treat when it’s a rare treat. When watching content in 3D becomes a normal occurrence you barely even notice it. That’s what made Muppet Vision 3D at Walt Disney World so special for all of those years (they even have the added 4D parts where they spray you with water, plus the theater gets wrecked throughout the movie). When everything is in 3D then a ride on Star Tours becomes less special.

So, let’s keep 3D movies to special occasions. Christopher Nolan has his IMAX movies and let’s give James Cameron 3D and cool ocean documentaries.

I am not a Robot… }o; I think

There’s one main reason why I prefer using my MacBook Pro over my PC for most of my “internet surfing.” People still call it surfin’ the internet, right?

Anytime I buy something or create a username for any website I come across a CAPTCHA quiz where my computer gets to decide whether or not I am a human. What’s with all of the pop quizzes, internet?

Old School Time Vortex of Words Captcha

These quizzes used to consist of strange combinations of letters and numbers that have passed through some wild time vortex. Those were easier than the visual ones of today. Anytime I am forced to choose which boxes contain [the secret item of the day] I’m only about 50% sure I’m right.

Is the pole part of the traffic light? Do jetskis count as boats? Is a boat still a boat if it’s on a trailer and not in the water? If most humans wouldn’t eat it, is it still considered food?

I didn’t know I had to go through an existential crisis to sign up for Bed, Bath and Beyond’s email list, or to buy concert tickets. Why are all of these robots wasting their time buying concert tickets and joining mailing lists? Who programmed them to do this?

They also never flat out tell you when you’re wrong, instead they move on to a new word. Maybe you’re just a dumb dumb, try again to convince me you are not a robot.

Why MacBook over PC:

Back to my main point: On my PC I have to actually choose which pictures are boats, roads, crosswalks or whatever they’re asking for. My MacBook (most of the time) assumes it’s still me and not a robot hijacking my Mac. So, it rarely goes into the guessing game. Instead I check the box I am not a robot (checkmark), and I continue with my purchase or whatever it is I’m doing.

So, although Macs are more expensive than your normal everyday PC, it’s definitely worth paying that extra money, just because your MacBook will remember that you are not a robot. If you don’t mind your computer accusing you of being a robot time and time again, then go ahead and get that DELL (or HP, or whatever Windows PC).

Elevators = Our Enemies

Here’s a random thought that’s been in my head for quite some time: Are elevators slowly killing us? Ok, maybe that’s a bit harsh. Perhaps, Are elevators messing up our bodies? (especially our knees) is a better question.

I’ve heard plenty of personal trainers and life coaches on morning shows (like the Today Show) say things like, “Health Tip! Don’t ride the elevator, take the stairs.” or “Use the opposite escalator and turn your trip into a StairMaster session.” Ok, no one has probably said that second one, but although it’s a bit dangerous, I still think it’s a good idea.

It’s not the elevator vs the stairs that I think is the problem. The main reason why I think elevators are slowly killing us (or ruining our bodies) is the intense braking. Think about any time you’ve ridden an elevator and it comes to a halt to open the doors, don’t you feel that in your knees? Especially when in a tall building.

Now in my 30s, I have many friends with “knee problems,” and I have them too. I’ve heard people say things like, “Oh, I used to play sports in high school.” Sports in high school, really? That was four years of your life — and you probably weren’t an elite athlete. How long have you been riding in elevators? Oh, and you continue to ride them today? I think we’ve found our problem, Mr. (or Mrs.) ex-high school athlete.

How many elevators do you take each day? Do you live in an apartment and ride an elevator every time you leave or come back home? Do you work in a building? Maybe it’s a skyscraper and the elevator travels 80 floors in the matter of a few seconds. Do you know how fast it’s moving? I don’t, but maybe we should google that. Those are some intense brakes for the elevator to be able to quickly stop at any given floor.

So, if you live in an apartment building and work in a different building and go out to eat lunch in another building and do even more building things each day imagine your daily elevator rides (DERs). (1) You ride down to leave your house, (2) You ride up to your office, (3) it’s lunch time and you want to leave, you go back down, (4) you go to a Nordstrom cafe, it’s upstairs, but you take the elevator, (5) you leave Nordstrom, (6) back up to your office, (7) the bathroom on your floor is broken, ride down one floor, (8) ride back up, (9) time to go home, (10) back up to your apartment, (11 & 12) take out the dog, and bring him back up.

And that’s just in one day. Twelve elevator rides later I’m sure there’s something wrong with your knees, maybe even with your inside parts from all the movement (I guess I would feel the same about planes, if I were someone who traveled by plane weekly). Who knows? I’m no scientist, but elevators are definitely going to be the downfall of humankind.

So, how can we fix this problem? I have the perfect solution. Remember when you were a kid and you would jump in the air when the elevator was braking to reach maximum air? (If you don’t know what I’m talking about then you must have been a nerd or a narc). But if we all start doing that again then we’ll be fine — also, it may even help humanity evolve so that one day we’ll all jump as high as MJ, from birth.

Easily Influenced

Something I recently learned is that I’m very easily influenced into buying, trying and watching new things. I would have a horrible time if I ever got sucked into that Scientology building on US 1 (or any Scientology building for that matter). Cults would love me and my easily moldable brain.

Anytime I listen to a podcast with a guest promoting their latest work (movies, tv, books) I come away thinking I gotta check that out. I bought John Cleese’s and Seth Rogen’s newest books after hearing them on Conan’s podcast (both books were great). I wanted to watch all of John Leguizamo’s latest movies and his one man show after he was on the ID10T podcast.

The strangest one was not too long ago when Justin Roiland (co-creator of Rick & Morty) was on the Kinda Funny podcast. He talked about being a fidgety person, but he never wanted a fidget spinner because those are stupid. He got into Rubik’s Cubes instead — and not the ones we all had as kids. Justin became obsessed with the GAN speed cubes. Those are the ones the little genius kids use in those Rubik’s Cube solving speed competitions.

I now have three different types of GAN speed Rubik’s Cubes in my Amazon cart. I don’t think I’ll end up buying any of them but they are there — waiting. I also spent some time learning some info about them and watching speed cube videos on YouTube. There’s even a Speed Cubers documentary on Netflix (it’s now on “My List”).

I attribute these problems of mine to being a generally curious person. Anytime I hear about a new documentary, movie, album, video game or pretty much any piece of entertainment I go to the internet to learn more. Whenever I’m watching anything and see or hear a familiar face or voice, I must go to IMDB.com to find out who this person is and what else they’re in.

Recently I wrote a post for my other blog/site (myVGBC.com) where the same sort of thing happens with me in movies and games anytime a new entry into an existing series is released. For instance, the new Ratchet & Clank: Rift Apart is coming out in less than a month, and that made me start to replay Ratchet & Clank (2016) once again, even though I first played it just last year.

Anytime a new Marvel movie is announced I have to watch the movies that came before (or at least the ones that deal with those characters). If it’s a new hero, then I’ll just watch a random Marvel movie to raise my hype levels.

Maybe I’m just like a little kid. Whenever my nephew sees a commercial for a toy, no matter how stupid it is. He says, “Nono, I want that.” And I just say, “Ok, do you have any money?” And by that time another commercial has finished and he says, “Nono, I want THAT.”

Smoking on Planes

There was a time when people were allowed to smoke cigarettes on airplanes — and they actually did it! Like all of the time. I think about this every few months and it still freaks me out.

I was on a plane a few years back (pre-COVID, but still not too long ago) and the arm rests still had ash trays built into them. They just happened to be glued shut.

A SHORT (BRIEFLY RESEARCHED) HISTORY LESSON

In the year 1990 smoking on aircrafts (to and from the US) was mostly prohibited. Pilots were still allowed to smoke in the cockpit. It wasn’t until Bill Clinton signed the Aviation Investment and Reform Act in the year 2000 that smoking on planes was completely banned. Some countries kept smoking on planes around until 2016 or later.

LINK TO HISTORY

Imagine being on a plane today and witnessing another passenger pull out a lighter or match and lighting up a cigarette. That person would be tackled so fast just for pulling that thing out, and rightfully so. Planes are smelly enough as is, they don’t need the help of someone smoking a cigarette.

“SMOKING OR NON-SMOKING?”

There was also a time, not too long ago when you’d be asked this simple question at a restaurant, “Smoking or Non-Smoking?” Meaning, do you want to sit in the clean part or the nasty part of this fine establishment? And on a busy night with no reservation the “Smoking” section was where you’d end up.

When I was in college people would smoke cigarettes in bars. Today, I can wear the same pair of jeans for weeks visiting different bars and restaurants. Back then, if I wore my jeans to a smokey bar they’d be in the hamper that night and washed the next day. Plus, I’d have to shower before going to bed.

Hotels used to have “Smoking and Non-Smoking” rooms, and I’m pretty sure many of them still do. Some unknowingly, “Would you like to stay in a room that smells like we cleaned it or one that smells like we didn’t even have enough time to change the sheets?”

Thanks to my grandmother I’ve never been a fan of cigarettes. I’ve never tried one and I plan to never try one. I loved my grandma, but I hated the smell of her smoking in our house when she would come over. Luckily, she stopped smoking early on in my life.

Whenever I find someone who still smokes cigarettes it’s like I’m meeting a strange time traveler. Of course, everyone switched over to e-cigs and vapes by now. Years later, we’ll find out that everyone is getting some sort of computer virus in their bodies thanks to all the e-smoking.

Croqueta Roulette

Something I never really thought about but I do almost anytime I go to Publix in the middle of the day when I haven’t had lunch yet and I’m too hungry to wait until I get home — I always buy some croquetas from the Publix bakery.

SIDE NOTE: For you gringos a croqueta is a fried breaded cylinder usually containing ham inside and some other stuff too. I’ve heard someone call it a fritter before. They can also be filled with chicken, fish, cheese, chorizo, mac & cheese and all sorts of crazy stuff. I would call it the Cuban cousin to the Italian Mozzarella stick.

I’ve always been a ham croqueta person. Ham is the original. If you order a croqueta anywhere you will 99% of the time be given a ham croqueta, no questions asked. If the establishment you are at has chicken, fish, cheese or other types of croquetas they will either ask you, “What type of croqueta?” or you will have to specify, “I want a croqueta de pollo.” (Spanish for chicken croqueta).

What I do at Publix bakery to make my mid-day snack into a fun game is I usually order a few original croquetas (aka HAM) and one of either chicken or cheese (sometimes one of each). They all get thrown into the same bag and since all croquetas look about the same from the outside, it’s a fun guessing game.

The Publix bakery person usually tries to separate them with some fancy bakery paper, but that doesn’t really work because they are getting tossed around all over the bag. Also, I’m going to eat these while driving so I will not look in the bag to see how they are separated.

So, once I leave Publix and I’m driving home or to my next destination I get to play a little game I call CROQUETA ROULETTE. I stick my hand in the bag and grab one at a time. Next, I take a bite not really thinking about what’s going to be inside and I’m surprised each time.

Here’s my croqueta bag from yesterday’s game.

Yesterday I ate the cheese one first. I had ordered three ham and one cheese, so the game ended on that first bite. It was still was and always is a delicious game to play.

So, the next time you find yourself at Publix (if you’re in Florida) order some croquetas (if you’re in South Florida), and play a round of CROQUETA ROULETTE (if you’re in the car). 

You won’t regret it. If you’re not in Florida, find some kind of dumpling place that will let you order single dumplings and try DUMPLING ROULETTE. Maybe a FILLED DONUT ROULETTE. There are many ways to play this game.

Customer Service

Back in college I took a class on hospitality and customer service for some reason. In this class we read the book Raving Fans by Sheldon Bowles and Ken Blanchard. The book’s message was telling companies/brands to have great customer service so that they have “raving fans” rather than customers.

Let me start off by saying that I am not a bamboozler. I do not lie to get free stuff. The stories below are completely true and this is a teaching moment for you — my fans. Only use this method of reaching out to brands/companies if you had a less than wonderful experience.

Customer Experiences

Have you ever had a bad experience with a product or service? Maybe a slightly inconvenient experience? We all have and I’m here to tell you that as long as it’s a small accident you don’t have to go public with it. Don’t be like Topanga’s husband who tried to say there were shrimp tails in his cereal when they were probably just funny shaped sugar strips (I actually didn’t keep up with this story so I have no idea what they ended up being).

Most companies today have a Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and possibly multiple social media profiles. They’re mostly run by ad agency interns. This is why when something goes wrong I find a company’s Twitter profile and send them a DM (Direct Message). It’s also good to send a picture, when possible.

This is the story of three different customer experiences I had with three different brands — one bad, one slightly inconvenient and one that I’m not even sure affected me in any sort of way. It’s also a story of redemption and how these three companies stepped up and admitted they were wrong and made it up to me.

THE BAD: FRESH STEAKS

I shop at The Fresh Market weekly and I have stated this before in other posts. Earlier this month I bought two steaks (Filet Mignon) to make for dinner for my girlfriend and myself. It was Easter weekend, I purchased them on Friday and by Sunday they had transformed into rotten, ugly zombie meat. I had to toss them.

I’m not really sure how long Steak should keep in the fridge, I usually freeze them if I’m not cooking and eating them within one or two days. I would guess two to three days would be the max.

My next visit to the Fresh Market I asked someone in the meat department how long a Filet Mignon should last in the fridge, they told me a whole week — 7 days! I thought that was a crazy thing to say, but instead I just said, “Sure, ok.” and nodded my head.

I didn’t want to be a Karen and talk to the manager of the store, although I have met him and he’s a nice dude. Instead I went to Twitter and DM-ed the Fresh Market directly.

I also mentioned that I was told that a steak would keep fresh in the fridge for up to one week. They immediately made things right and sent me a $25 gift card. The two steaks were probably somewhere between $10 and $20, so I think this was a good job by them.

Thank you Karla!

At no point was I going to stop going to Fresh Market, it’s still my favorite grocery store. And even after having this and a few other small problems from time to time, they have always been great about making it up to me.

THE SLIGHTLY INCONVENIENT: WHERE’S MY BOLOGNA, OSCAR?

The second experience was with a classic Lunchables meal (Bologna and Cheese). I do eat more Lunchables than someone in their 30s should eat, but Lunchables are always a quick, easy and delicious meal.

There I was enjoying my Lunchables cracker sandwiches. Yes, I double up and instead of making six one layer cracker stackers I make three sandwiches instead with two of each item.

Cracker + Meat + Cheese + Meat + Cheese + Cracker.

I was on my last cracker sandwich when I realized that there had only been five slices of Bologna this whole time instead of the usual six. My last cracker sandwich was a disappointment.

Cracker + Cheese + Meat + Cheese + Cracker.

Yes, it was still good but I wasn’t satisfied ending my lunch(able) on an incomplete sandwich. I went to Twitter.

I mentioned a FREE Nintendo Switch there because until December of 2020 Lunchables was holding a free Nintendo Switch contest which I entered multiple times. This is the reason why I’ve eaten so many Lunchables recently. Also, I probably would have eaten the same amount of Lunchables without a contest.

No Nintendo Switch… but a nice letter and $3 coupon.

Lunchables sent me a nice letter and a coupon for $3 off of a Lunchables to make up for my incomplete lunch(able) that day. I hope Lunchables don’t cost more than $3? Either way it doesn’t matter, this coupon has expired since I was holding onto it just for this post. Oops.

I guess I should just frame the coupon and put it up on the wall now that it’s expired. This will show people my friendship with the Oscar Mayer company.

THE I’M NOT SURE WHAT TO CALL IT: NOT ENOUGH M&M’S

The last instance wasn’t really a problem at all. I was truly just informing the Keebler elves that I had purchased a bag of Keebler M&M cookies and every cookie in the bag either had one or two M&M’s only.

I have eaten tons of one or two M&M cookies in my day. It’s usually only a few of the cookies that don’t have the proper amount of M&M’s. When it’s a small percentage of the cookies that are missing M&M’s, it makes them special. When the whole bag has zero cookies with the proper three M&M’s, something has gone completely wrong.

I felt it was my duty to inform the Keebler elves of their mistake. I didn’t want other people to go M&M-less too.

My message to the Keebler elves. They must have a strong wifi signal in that tree, they got back to me right away.

Even though I wasn’t trying to get them to send me anything, the Keebler elves still sent me not one, but two coupons for their family of products. These just came in the other day so let’s hope I use them before they expire.


These are just three small experiences I’ve had like this of many. I’ve reached out to many companies with feedback and complaints and have usually received some help . I’m still a fan of these three companies. I will continue to shop at the Fresh Market weekly, and I have many Keebler Elf cookies and Lunchable to eat in my lifetime. 

That’s all.

Elevator Etiquette (2.0)

I know I once had the idea of writing a learning about Elevator etiquette/behavior. I also have a lot of thoughts about elevators in general and how strange they are. But today, I’m here to talk about one of my problems with elevators: dealing with other humans in elevators.

I’ve ridden many elevators (or lifts, if you’re British) in my day. I’ve always been the type of person that doesn’t want to talk to a stranger on an elevator ride. Yes, I shared a up-and-down box-cart ride with you for a few seconds, but you don’t have to tell me “good day,” or “have a nice one” or anything of the sort because of it.

I won’t be mad if you just leave me in the elevator with my thoughts once you’ve reached your destination. And if we reach my destination first I don’t think you should be mad if I don’t say anything on my way out.

I get nervous about what to say, and when I feel like I have to say something to the person I usually just walk out and scream, “Bye!” at them. It’s people who have elevator catch phrases that I’m concerned about. People who say things like, “Have a good one,” or “Take it easy,” or even “See ya later!” Ok, “see ya later,” is a very strange one. You don’t know if that’s true. You may not see me later on, you may not even see me ever again in your life.

Now with the COVID-19 elevators have gotten a whole lot weirder. There’s new rules to riding an elevator. There’s a new cap on the number of people. Remember the simple days, when it was a weight limit and you just had to hope that the elevator wouldn’t beep or shake. Also, everyone could just pack into the elevator like sardines.

Today, there is a two to four person limit (on the elevators I’ve seen). There’s also a mask rule, so it’s harder to talk to people (of course some people are idiots and don’t think they have to wear a mask, but that’s a different story altogether).

I’ve even added an additional wild card. I now wear my Bluetooth ear buds for elevator rides, grocery shopping and pretty much anywhere else I want to avoid talking to people. And it always works. Or at least if anyone has tried to talk to me, I haven’t noticed. And that’s the same as it working to me.

I will continue to use my ear buds in public well after the pandemic…