Saturday, August 13, 2011

Day 606

Janet had to make some airline reservations last night and when she printed out the receipt, she discovered that American Airlines had added a $50 surcharge for talking to a reservations agent on the phone. I couldn't believe it. I knew that airlines were pushing people to do everything online these days, but this seemed pretty extreme. These guys really didn't want you to call them on the phone. It's probably a sign of things to come. I find it harder and harder to get a real person on the phone for any situation. Automated phone systems are almost impenetrable. There is usually a secret word that will let you bypass the automated messages and talk to a real person, but nobody wants to tell you the secret. Once, when I was stuck in automated message hell for fifteen minutes with Paypal, I finally got someone to tell me that if you said the word agent very quickly three times in a row, you could bypass the robots and get a real agent. Virtual agents on websites are even worse. Why spend ten minutes typing back and forth when a short conversation would resolve everything. Somehow, we have taken a wonderful invention like the telephone and ruined it.

It finally rained today. Well, technically it rained last night, but it was still sprinkling a little early this morning. Even though I didn't get the roof patched in time, I was still happy to see the cooler weather. The temperature must have been twenty degrees lower today. It was actually quite pleasant. The only one who didn't like the rain was Dot. Dot hates rain and even this gentle shower stressed her out. She got so worked up, she threw up right after breakfast. Once the rain stopped, she was right back to normal though.

I have to design a new website this weekend. I don't have any information to put on the pages, but that's never stopped me before. I'll just insert some plausible placeholder information until the real information eventually materializes. I'm always amazed at how often the real information never appears and my placeholder text gradually becomes the real text by default.

When I was running errands today, I noticed that the left rear tire on the Defender was quite low. One good thing about off-road tires is that they'll run with almost no air in them. I continued my shopping and when I eventually got home with the groceries, I dug the air compressor out from under a pile of Dalmatian Rescue event paraphernalia and pumped all the tires up again. Seems like I did something like this three or four months ago. I must have a slow leak.

I made good progress on my website design this afternoon and with any luck at all, I'll finish things up tomorrow with plenty of time left over to vacuum the house and take the dogs to the dog park.

Dalmatian of the Day

Watch of the Day

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