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January 27, 2011

Getting revenge on terrible customer service with the internet has never been funnier

The set-up: Gregarious Australian decides to go snowboarding in the US, He realizes quickly that he will need actual warm clothes. He tries to buy some gloves from a local ski shop and gets dicked over pretty hard. As revenge he creates a realistic-looking coupon and passes it around until the mouth-breathing too-cool-for-school owner contacts him. Then the magic happens. Function 4 Sports. Free Burton snowboard with Ride boot and bindings. A small selection from the ongoing missives:
The three staff members working the day I purchased the gloves, who I will refer to as Fatty, Tatooey and Fuzzy for identification purposes, seemed rather annoyed by my interruption of their 'sitting in a chair looking cool' time. Fuzzy seemed the most inconvenienced but that is understandable what with having to deal with inappropriate questions such as, "Do you sell waterproof gloves for use in the snow?" in a snow-sports shop. Although intending to also purchase board, bindings and boots that day in order to avoid dealing with rental-shop queues that make the Perestroika bread lines look like a couple of friends standing around having a chat, I did not wish to infringe any further on Fuzzy's prime duties of growing an awesome beard and showing a rash to Fatty and Tatooey. Although Tattooey provided him with a diagnosis of "dude, dont' pick it, let it scab" that could only stem from several years in medical school, Fatty was less than impressed and only gave it a mild glance and noncommittal grunt before going back to playing Angry Birds. I should probably be thankful that your staff were too occupied with having their earlobes stretched by Tonka-truck tyres and wearing pants around their knees to sell me a snowsurfingboard made of sugar or goggles made of bees. While I may not have your experience running a business, I am pretty sure that if I owned a shop that sold chairs and you entered and said to me, "Hello shopkeeper, I am looking for something to sit on" and I replied "Sure, this one should suit your needs perfectly, it is made for sitting on" and you purchased the chair, took it home, sat on it, and it exploded, taking out previously purchased furniture with it, you would probably drive back to my shop and say, "Excuse me, I bought this chair an hour ago, used it in the manner you recommended, and it exploded - I am not asking for compensation for my other furniture but would like to exchange it for a non-exploding chair that performs in the manner originally described." Responding with anything other than "I do apologise, here's a replacement" would certainly come as a surprise to you and I doubt "Fuck off, you sat in it" would mean I'd see you, Fatty, Tattoey and Fuzzy at my premises the following week shopping for cushions.

Getting end-of-life care right

Health care from the heart – my response | The Incidental Economist
But, some time later, I found myself back in the NICU. A similar situation was occurring. This time, though, the doctor in charge handled everything differently. She spoke to the patients honestly and in a completely different tone. She asked the parents what they wanted out of the short time they might have with their baby. They cried at first, but then they stopped. They cleaned the baby up and dressed him in clothes his grandparents had bought. And they took him out. They were gone for a few hours, and then they came back. They allowed us to give the baby drugs to comfort him. They held him, as a family, as he quietly passed. I remember quite clearly his sister was in the room. She was about six. I asked her how they had spent the day. She told me how they had taken the baby to the park to see the water. They had brought him to family members so everyone could hold him. They showed him the sun and let him lay in the grass and let a dog lick his face. Her mother was listening in at the end, and somehow smiling. Some months later, I ran into the mother in a different part of the hospital. She remembered me, and thanked me for all I had done. I remarked that I hadn’t done much; they had cared for the baby. “No,” she replied. “Without all of you, he never would have known what chocolate ice cream tastes like.”