Hi Ho, Hi Ho, A Mattress Shopping We Go – Part 2

Attention: This post has been updated to reflect new information regarding the errand service who attempted to scam me. The new information is at the bottom of this post.

Where, oh where to begin. Ripped off, nearly scammed, bought a new mattress, and almost lost it on the way home. Sounds like the type of movie they’d air on Lifetime.

After my fall in St. Thomas, my back and shoulder were injured. The L3 and L4 vertebae, or rather, the discs in between them, were toast, and I wasn’t quite sure what was wrong with my shoulder. Awaking from the mattress I purchased some months ago left me in excruciating pain. When I would walk, the nerve running down the lower left of my back into my though would cause muscle spams, walking felt like I was being electrocuted. Anytime I tried to move or rotate my shoulder more than 90 degrees, the pain was horrendous. I could feel a muscle or tendon clicking as it moved over bone. Sitting, as I do working from home was equally painful. I could never find a comfortable position, and utilizing a keyboard or mouse only made things worse.

Fast forward a few weeks, I see my Doctor, Orthopedics, a Physical Therapist and have a MRI. Turns out I have a mild back injury which will require physical therapy, and mild tendonopathy of the something or other in my shoulder, which *may* require surgery. Lucky me! /sarcasm

During consultations with my various healthcare providers, they all recommended I purchase as firm mattress. Great, I thought. I just bought that nice (somewhat expensive) soft and cushy bed a few months ago, now I have to go through this all over again.

After the anxiety settled, I knew what I would do. I’d buy a mattress from IKEA. If you recall from Part 1 of the now “series” of mattress posts, I was originally going to buy a IKEA mattress but decided against it due to lack of available information on product quality, reliability, and longevity. However, with having to buy a new mattress less than one year from a previous purchase, cost was the number one concern.

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Trip Report: Regal Princess Cruise, 3-15 to 3-22, 2015

Addendum: March 24, 2015: This is the fourth edit this post has undergone. In this iteration I intend to clarify a few things, and provide a new layout for my thoughts & opinions.

First and foremost, when I posted this on CruiseCritic, under the title “Regal Princess – And then I nearly Died”, my post was met with the following replies:

  • One thank you – which I appreciate!
  • Numerous posts describing how this blog post was full of nothing but negative comments.
  • Numerous posts accusing me of utilizing reductio ad absurdum, hyperbole, exaggeration, or simply lying. If you are a CruiseCritic member who found this post and remember my original post – you may have noticed it disappeared. This was at my request to the Moderators.
  • Second, the story told in this post is in no way exaggerated or hyperbole. It may be worded in a way which reads as over-dramatized. Often that’s the way I write. If you don’t like it, click here to return to sanity.

My opinion is my opinion. It is formulated based on my experiences with particular situations. If I seem biased at some parts, it may be because I am. It’s human to allow an experience to influence your opinion of something. I’m not a professional journalist, I have no creed which states I must offer unbiased opinions/statements in my writings. After all, this is my blog.

Originally most of the below text was written while in my stateroom, Lido 103 on the Regal Princess sailing March 15 to 22, 2015. As I have edited it several times, that is no longer true.

Because there are people who aren’t able to dedicate the time or effort needed to read the original post in it’s entirety, I have summarized the thoughts into sections.

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Is providing customer service a blessing or burden to your company?

For many companies, customer service is their lifeblood, not their product. After all, customers give them money in exchange for an expectation of excellent service. It’s a dying art, customer service, in which no one is an expert, merely a student. Unfortunately, some companies take the easy way out – offer a good-to-excellent product, build an extensive knowledge base, and in the event someone contacts them, offer a canned reply in the hopes of “shooing” them away.

The scenario I just described happened to me this week. Sadly, it was from a company I least expected – BackBlaze.

BackBlaze is an online backup service. They compete with your Carbonites, CrashPlans, and Mozy’s of the world. Their bread and butter is their $5.00 monthly plan with unlimited storage, a deal compared to Mozy’s $9.99/mo for 120 GB, Carbonite’s clumsy and somewhat unreliable software, and CrashPlans cumbersome interface.

Don’t be fooled though. Where BackBlaze has pioneered in great software, they’ve created huge setbacks in their customer service arena.

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Trip Report: Orlando, FL & Universal Studios – 2014

Orlando, no doubt the tourist capital of the Sunshine State, home to Walt Disney World, Sea World, and Universal Studios. Also a favorite travel destination of mine, mostly due to the distance and travel time, around 2.5 hours. While I’m not a fan of Sea World (not for popular reasons, I merely prefer a proper aquarium), I love Universal Studios and enjoy Disney World, in small doses. Orlando’s Mall at Millenia and I also go way back, having been a frequent flyer in the Apple Store before Jacksonville’s location opened.hogwarts-hogsmeade

We usually make a pilgrimage to Orlando a few times a year, usually to visit the world class spa at the Ritz-Carlton Grande Lakes Orlando, but this time around I was keen on visiting the new Diagon Alley at Universal Orlando’s Wizarding World of Harry Potter. We’ve been to Hogsmeade, and aside from the Butterbeer, it’s kinda meh. As you may know, they took an area of The Lost Continent, Merlinwood, and converted it into phase 1 of The Wizarding World of Harry Potter, aka Hogsmeade. I say “meh” because it’s the same Islands of Adventure area with a Harry Potter facelift. Same rides: Dueling Dragons became Dragon Challenge; Flying Unicorn became Flight of the Hippogriff. Color me excited!

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Banned from the Dentist – Bad Business Practice? Or Normal?

About a year ago, I began the long, mildly painful, almost lethal, and expensive process of restoring my teeth. I had numerous issues including some teeth which required extraction, and a few cavities. Well, more than a few, but that’s beside the point. As someone had not been to the Dentist in probably 5 years, I asked for recommendations from my oral surgeon.

Enter Crovatto & Edwards. Their office staff were hospitable, and turns out, the Doctors weren’t scary! The Dentist isn’t all that bad, folks. You just have to find the right one!

Of course, not all that glitters is gold. At first, I had to see Doctor Edwards, which didn’t work out. I suppose I’m too fidgety or needy. Whatever. On the next visit, Doctor Crovatto, who was much more pleasant, and willing to work with me. In the end, we found my problem with Doctor Edwards was due to me being nervous. When you’re nervous, your pulse and blood pressure increase, which causes you to “eat thru” or “burn thru” the novocaine much faster than normal.

Also, scheduling with their office wasn’t the most pleasant. It was about 50% / 50% – they aren’t open on Saturdays and my work schedule isn’t the easiest to work around. So, I missed an appointment. Well, actually two. The first time they waived the missed appointment fee (thank goodness, $35 dollars would totally bankrupt me! /sarcasm). The second time, today, I wasn’t so fortunate.

But, how bad could it really be? Could a Dentist ban you from their office?

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Comcast – Going Down the Rabbit Hole

Our story begins on July 23, 2013 – a normal Florida day, State Government bickering over who should take the blame for today’s screwup, people protesting a new adult toy store, and the scents of Botox and Bengay were fresh in the air. It was perfect until I was told the TV said “Not Authorized” and noticed the phone and internet were acting funny.

As a former Comcast employee, I figured this was something account related. Little did I know how far down the rabbit hole I would venture.

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