Friday, January 17, 2014

Day 1494

I returned to a restaurant I hadn't visited in about three months and was surprised to discover that the entire staff had changed. All the waiters were new. Even the chef was new. The new staff was almost painfully friendly, continually smiling and making sure that they told you their name. When my order arrived, my suspicions were confirmed. This place had hired a restaurant consultant. I ordered the same thing I always order at this place. The portions were slightly smaller, but everything was exceptionally pretty on the plate. The restaurant consultant had probably given the new staff a seminar about interacting with customers and plating food.

I found all the changes a bit sad, since there was nothing wrong with the restaurant in the first place. I actually preferred the slightly grumpy original waiters to the forced cheeriness of this new batch. I'm sure the restaurant was profitable, since it was almost always full, but I'll bet the owners weren't satisfied and wanted to make even more money. I don't know why people are always compelled to change things. My motto has always been "if it's not broke, don't fix it."

My haircut later in the day was equally interesting. It's easy to get the pulse of the nation if you listen to what people are talking about in a barber shop or hair salon. The woman getting her hair done next to me was telling her stylist that she wanted to take her vacation in Marfa or Area 51, so she could look for aliens. My own stylist was telling me how she likes to take her cats on car rides, so they can watch birds through the sun roof. Lately, I've noticed that hair salons try to shame you into leaving a tip. When you hand them your credit card, they look you in the eye and ask if you'd like some cash back for a tip. Like $75 for a simple haircut isn't enough? Jeez! Today, all the people in line ahead of me were leaving lavish tips, so I guess the shaming worked. I left a tip as well.

I've got to do something about my work load. One of my clients has already doubled the number of pictures they want to change out on their website every week, and another wants to double the amount of writing assignments they give me each month. So far, I'm keeping up but the house is sure getting dirty. I really don't have time for anything other than working and walking the dogs these days. Sadly, nobody seems to think that writing the blog every day is important but me.

Dalmatian of the Day
Watch of the Day


  1. I think it's important! I would miss you if you stopped blogging. So you charge a flat monthly rate? I charge by the hour.

    1. I've found that you can make more if you charge a monthly retainer. The faster and more efficient you are at doing a given amount of work, the more your effective hourly rate goes up.

  2. Sounds great, but I don't think I could get away with that! Every time one of my small clients comes up for server renewal I'm holding my breath until they say they want to keep the site another year. I've got one due at the end of this month. It's such a loser of a site. It's awful, out of date and dumb. I redesigned it, but he doesn't want me to take the time to upload the new stuff because he can't get around to filling in a few pieces of info I need. I've decided I can't let myself care, as long as he's willing to pay for the server space. I lost my two biggest accounts because they didn't want to pay "money" any more. My only hope is small clients who don't know how easily they could do what I am doing for them on a free blog platform.