Ikea Inventory Control not actually in control

I’ve been trying to get glass doors for two bookcases from Ikea that we recently got for the new apartment. I didn’t think it could be that hard, yet somehow it is. Emeryville didn’t have them in stock when we got the bookcases, and they wouldn’t have fit in the car if they were in stock, so I’ve been trying to get them for the last couple of weeks. Buying them online isn’t an option because the shipping costs more than the items. ($200+ dollars to ship to flat pack doors? That’s just crazy talk!) The online site does allow you to check stock for each store, which is nice, and I’ve been doing that. Until recently the doors were always out of stock when I had the time to drive over there. But today they were in stock in East Palo Alto so I thought I’d take a long lunch and drive down there and pick them up, and grab some sweedish food while I was at it. I didn’t want to have there be any stocking problems so I called the store to double check and was redirected to the toll free order by phone number. Unfortunately they wouldn’t let me buy them over the phone and then go pick them up, but was assured they were in stock. I drove down there (which took ages due to google screwing up the directions, doh!) and eventually found an employee who looked up the doors and told me there were 6 left and where I could find them in the self serve section. I hussled over there and sure enough there was the bin with the label for the doors I wanted – but no doors. I found another employee and asked them why they computer said there were six doors but non actually existed. They said it was strange but maybe they were still on a palate up in the high towering shelves and I should really talk to someone else. I found the person I was supposed to talk to, and they went and checked the bin to confirm I wasn’t just a retarded customer and sure enough there were still no doors to be found. The palate of doors up in the shelves idea was dismissed because a palate of doors would be more than six. The conclusion was that the inventory system was just wrong and what can you do? Totally unconcerened about several hundred dollars of inventory missing. Maybe Ikea shoots the messenger, because when I eventually got back to work they were still listed as available on the website. Highly dissapointing given Ikea’s usual good experience.

Bowl The Planet Bowling for the environment

The Center for ecosystem survival is having their annual bowl-a-thon
and silent auction Saturday, March 15th down in Daily City. Like
any something-a-thon you try and get donations from friends,
coworkers, or yourself. Either on a flat rate or per event (like
per pin based on your best score.) $35 dollars worth of donations
gets you in the door for 3 hours of bowling and pizza and
softdrinks. You need 4 people to reserve your own lane and lanes
can have up to 7 people. Higher donation levels get you
progressively better swag, like the event shirt. Which Rachel did
again this year, and the image she drew for it looks great. The
silent auction is fun, last year we got a couple of discounted
gift certificates to a couple nice restaurant. Go
to savenature.org and check it
out.

butcher bird

I recently read “Butcher Bird” by Richard Kadrey, which is
available as a free download from his
publisher here.
It is kind of a cross
between American
Gods by Neil Gaiman and
the Nightside series by Simon R. Green.
At this point in my life I’ve read enough sf/fantasy I wasn’t
particularly surprised or amazed by “Butcher Bird” but I enjoyed
the plot and characters and thought it was well done. A fast
fairly short read.

PGE and monopolistic practices

I’m used to the customer service from the government sanctioned
monopolies being terrible. I expect to wait on hold for ages when
I have to call up PGE for whatever reason. I couldn’t imagine
what they could do that would actually be worse than their current
customer service. However they have managed to do what I could
not imagine. I got called by them about an appointment, it went
to my voicemail, and the message I got was hilarious. The gist
is: a computerized voice told me they were going to connect
me to a live person to talk about my appointment, at which point I
hear music and a different computerized voice kicks in and tells
me that all the operators are busy and there is quite a wait. But
if I don’t want to wait I can punch in my number and, you guessed
it, they’ll call me back. What a world.

Gray Squirrel Garden Attack

While working, post move, on organizing the kitchen Sunday, I saw a cute little gray squirrel hop hop hoping along the deck, with a nut in his mouth. Very adorable. I thought our poor city cats should get a chance to see this example of things they think they want to hunt and sprang into action trying to find said cats. I go for the living room looking for the cats and take a backward glance at the cute gray squirrel only to discover the little blighter has hopped into my container of carrot seedlings and is busy digging a hole to bury his nut! I immediately had to go chase him away and explain to him that he was a lazy little squirrel and there was perfectly good dirt at the bottom of his tree and he is not welcome to use my container gardern as his winter food storage system.