Saturday, 31 December 2016

Lesson Learned

Amy I think I got spammed from you.

Oh no. What did I say?

Something about a yoga workshop. Haha. As if.

Um, actually, it might kinda be true.  Is it in January?

Yeah, I think so, but I didn't read that far into it because it was SO obviously not written by you. Wasn't funny at all, and there was like, no hook, you know what I mean?

Er, really? Because I ---

You guys talking about that weird spam from the other day?

Yeah from Amy? Did you see it?

The yoga thing? Uh-huh but there's like no way Amy wrote it. You can tell, because it's like so not her.

Guys? It might've been me? Is it like the thing with my yoga friend?

Well, like could be, but it reallllly didn't sound like --

Hang on, so you ARE doing it? You're teaching a yoga class?

Well, it's a workshop. Like, guided meditation and then like, some writing instruction and opportunity for uh -

You ARE teaching it? Because man, it really didn't sound like you've written it. Wow.  I'm shocked What's it about?

Finding your inner voice.


Possible Trite Sayings That Could Correspond To This Situation:

1. Those who don't know, teach
2. Physician, heal thyself
3. To thine own self be true
4. It doesn't matter where you are coming from, it matters where you are going

Sunday January 22 9:30am-12:30pm
$50 in advance, $60 at the door
l"Esprit Rehabilitation Centre near Vendome Metro, Montreal
 Click here to register via e-mail
limited space available and not to show off but half the spots are already taken

Something From Our Vaults (aka 2012)

Click here to read today's post.

Thursday, 29 December 2016

Synergies You Don't Need

Super busy weekend and know I should quit while I'm ahead but can't help myself.

Last stop: Dollar Store with eleven year old T.

Forgot my PIN.

It was something about Columbus sailing the ocean blue but with one digit off. 1592?

Tried again.1942?

Still no.

Paid with cash, some humiliation and a dash of panic.

Put off dealing with problem until penniless.

Two different credit cards with same missing PIN and need to put gas in car. Time to handle situation. 1482? Nope.

Go to first bank, blah, blah PIN, blah blah forgot, blah blah help please.

Two pieces of ID?

(hand them over)

Change PINs to Santa Maria Pinta Nina something more memorable.

Took three seconds.

Go to second bank, no line, this should be simple.

Blah, blah PIN, blah blah forgot, blah blah help please.

Two pieces of ID?

(hand them over)






Are we waiting for something here?

It will just be a minute or two.




Do you know how long this will take? Because maybe I should just go to work and try another branch at my lunch hour?

Well, once the System is on, it will only take Three Seconds.






Do we know what the problem is?

Yes. System is not on.


I don't usually work at this branch.


But from what I understand, the person who was supposed to put the System on when she came into work this morning, didn't.

That's strange. Do we have any idea why not?

Apparently she forgot her password.

Wednesday, 28 December 2016


Made vague plans with new friend to have lunch at some point in the next couple of weeks.

Text her this morning to see if she's free Thurs.

No, sorry can't make it.

Oh. Sounds kinda cold.

Really? I text back. No Plan B? No How's Fri? No Lunch doesn't work - how bout a coffee?

Sorry. Parent in hospital. Hole in roof dripping water onto brand new teak coffee table.  Dog just barfed and is eating it.

OMG no. It's me that's sorry.

Complaint Lessons Learned

1. So quick to joke around when in fact something (many things) are actually wrong
2. Texting not always the best way to communicate but how else are you supposed to make lunch plans.
3. Gotta love new friends who tell it like it is. Next lunch is on me, cupcake.
4. Teak? Really?

Tuesday, 27 December 2016

Drive Sober, Check Your Boobs in the Shower, And...

Going on family vacation with extended family and they actually put me in charge of booking tickets.  (Click here to read about my travel savvy)

Booked online through third party seller which is a chance, but one we were willing to take.

Checked fine print and reservation says even when paid for, not considered confirmed until ticketed.

Checked again and we are ticketed.

Did you get the seats? Travel companion asks.

No but not worried. Whatever seats we have we'll deal with.

Did you get the seats? Travel companion asks.

(Oh. I guess we are not taking No for an answer.)

Go online to see which seats we were assigned.

Looks like there are very few seats left on this flight and can't tell which ones are ours.

Call airline.

They have not assigned us any seats.

Let's stop here to review:

1. We have reserved our flight
2. We have paid for our trip
3. We have been ticketed by the airline


4. We don't have seats.

Apparently, getting seats is no longer automatic when you buy a ticket on a major airline.

All is fine now - thank you for your concern - however I feel this should be part of a major PSA campaign.

Possible Public Service Announcement Tie-Ins
1. Check your prostate, check in your seat mate. Nothing is guaranteed.
2. Stay away from pot, make sure you confirm your spot.
3. Washing hands saves lives, booking seats reduces hives.
4. Slip it on before you slip it in, and find where you'll sit before the last min.

Monday, 26 December 2016

Thankfully He Didn't Have a Craving for Wild Boar

Complaining to colleague about how middle son G wanted me to stop on the way home from work and buy eggs,

It was freezing and dark and I was cold and tired.

Ok I said to him. I will take you because it's not snowing. If it were snowing and we had to clean off the car, that would be the final nail in the egg carton.

Colleague said Your son wanted you to buy him eggs?


Why didn't you just get him chickens?

(Is she joking)

Um, chickens?

Yeah. A few weeks ago my husband came home with a few brown hens. The kids are obsessed with playing with them. Haven't watched TV since.

And they live in your house?

Well, yes, in the backyard. Apparently all they need is a little heater and they'll be fine through the winter. And we will have fresh eggs. No need to stop at the store.

Complaint Lessons Learned

1. Do not complain to colleague about things your kids want or you may get suggestions for things you never ever would have wanted them to want.

2. Apparently, TV is still a thing.

3. The indefinite care and feeding of living and breathing chickens may well be less work than driving (and parking) in a Canadian winter.

4. Chickens have not yet told Colleague about their condo in Boca. No way are they planning to live outside all winter.

Sunday, 25 December 2016

Because 007 Was Already Taken

Ordering in from Vegan Restaurant for Vegan Son (read back story here)

Vegan Son wants Vegan Brownie.

Vegan Brownie from this Vegan Restaurant renowned in Vegan World but not on take out menu.

Order food online and click on halva sesame cookie and chocolate chip-ish cookie.

Put note with order saying if you have any Vegan Brownies please send and we will pay vegan driver.

Vegan Restaurant calls. We have Vegan Brownies but we can't send them to you because you didn't click to add them to your basket.

Can you add them to my basket now?

No I'm sorry that would be impossible.

You can add them to my tab and I will pay the vegan driver when he or she or they gets here.

No I'm sorry that would be impossible. You need to add brownie to your basket yourself.

Hang up phone and tell Vegan Son he is out of luck.

Vegan Son says Mom. Seriously. You have gotten way more complex blood out of way more stubborn stones. Please.

Ok fine. Will try harder.

Call Vegan Restaurant back. Is there any way at all I can get a Vegan Brownie for my Vegan Son.

Well, you would have to log back onto menu and create a new order.

But minimum order is $15.


So I would have to order $15 worth of Vegan Brownies? (Which by the way is like 2.5 brownies. Vegan Lifestyle costs lots of Vegan Money. Hence the term Greenbacks. Just kidding. Click here for origin of word).


Ok fine. Vegan Son is worth it. Look through menu and can't find Vegan Brownies anywhere.

I see them right here.

Really? Where?

Scroll down to desserts. See where it says Double Trouble Cookie?


That's actually a brownie.

Complaint Lessons Learned:

1. Vegan Brownie being pursued by undercover vegan operatives so must go undercover as a cookie.
2. Vegan Brownie part of Brownie independence movement and must be added to basket by itself.
3. Vegan Brownie refuses to be delivered by car because of drilling in the Arctic (or is it Antarctic?)
4. Vegan Brownie is actually delicious.

Saturday, 24 December 2016

Overheard on Elevator

Wow that must have been a productive lunch hour.

Yup. Lotsa kids, lotsa bags haha.

I was organized this year.

Yeah? Good for you.

Got all my gifts online.

Wow and you got 'em all? They were all here on time?

Yeah. Well except one.

What're you missing? That's what I'm afraid of. I'm afraid if I order them, they'll be here late.

Only one thing not here yet.


The alarm clock.

Possible Conclusions to Draw
1. People who buy alarm clocks probably order them late so they can't possibly get there on time
2. People who sell alarm clocks should be using them to get up on time and get to work to fill orders
3. Kid who was getting alarm clock for Christmas is probably happy it didn't show up and is getting cash instead
4. How long was this elevator ride

Wednesday, 30 November 2016

Maybe One Of Those Wrought Iron Frogs In A Bikini?

Husband sells and rents industrial dishwashers and dishwashing soap to restaurant and hotel kitchens.

They also do repairs.

Customer calls the other day.

Dishwasher is leaking. Please send Technician immediately.

Technician comes.

Customer's Partner Sees Technician. Says It's not the dishwasher, it's the trap system drain vent. We need a plumber not a Technician. Go Away.

Customer calls back. Where in the name of lillyfeathers (restaurant guys are delicate as you can imagine) is your Technician?

Technician was there. Your guy sent him home.

Why would he do that?

Well with all due respect Sir it seems like the right hand doesn't know what the left hand is doing.

Customer calls again. We need soap! You brought us a dishwasher with no soap!

Hmmm. That's strange. Let me see what happened.

Check with Sales Rep who swears up and down that she sent soap with order, Customer swears up and down that there is no soap around the restaurant.

Sales Rep gets on the phone with Customer and describes time of delivery, who signed for it, and what soap box looks like.

Hey, Customer says. We found it. But now we have a new problem.

What are we going to use to prop the door open?

Tuesday, 22 November 2016

Full Circle

Check into correct hotel.

Attend conference.

Check out at Front Desk and ask for hotel shuttle back to Airport shuttle terminal so that I can take the bus back to the airport using my prepaid ticket. Remember? From Part One?

I'm sorry, our shuttle doesn't go to the airport bus terminal.


Our shuttle only goes in a 5 mile radius. The airport shuttle terminal is more than 5 miles away. But I have an idea for you.


There's a hotel down the street? The Holiday Inn? They also have a shuttle, it's bright green? They drive to the Airport shuttle terminal. So our van guy can drive you to them, and then you can just ask them to take you the Airport shuttle terminal.

Isn't that what got me into this mess in the first place?

Complaint Lessons Learned:

1. You may think the hotel is confused when they tell you they don't have an airport shuttle but in fact you may be calling the wrong hotel
2. You may not be happy waiting for a van pick up but in fact you may not even be staying at this hotel so the van driver owes you nothing
3. You may be relieved to finally check into the correct hotel but in fact you may not have a lift back to the shuttle
4. Holiday Inn has such amazing customer service that even rival hotels are sending me to them

Monday, 21 November 2016

It's All About The Journey: Part Four

Wait a minute. Maybe you're staying at the Hilton:
  1. It's less than a mile up the road
  2. It also starts with H
  3. It's also on a street that starts with A
  4. Both have a bright green logo.
Let me call them and see if they have your reservation.

Yup. You are staying at the Hilton.

Wow, That's Flaky, even for me.

Don't feel bad, Hon. People do this all the time. Would you like a bottle of water?

Yes. To pour on my head so I wake up.

We will get Mike (the van driver) to take you over to the other hotel.

Oh great. I didn't even tip the guy, now, he's going to have to take me from the hotel I'm not even staying at.

Can I please get some change?

Sunday, 20 November 2016

It's All About The Journey: Part Three

Are you sure you're staying at the Holiday Inn?

Yes. I'm here for a conference.

Oh, the Liver Conference?

(What's a Liver Conference? Never mind, I don't want to know.)

No. The Crimebake. It's a mystery writer thing.

That's not at this hotel.

Questions Running Through My Mind:

1. Do I have the wrong weekend?

2. Do I have the wrong city?

3. How will I write this up for the blog?

Saturday, 19 November 2016

It's About the Journey Part Two

Hi it's Mark.

Are you the van driver? I don't see you.

Yeah, I was across the street waiting to see the bus. Guess I missed it.

Ok, because I think you told the hotel you were here waiting for me, and I was like am I in the right place? I don't see this guy anywhere.

Oh ha ha. Yeah, I meant I was across the street. I'm coming to get you now.

Lovely conversation about labour issues in workplace that I would share with you but was sworn to secrecy under the Hotel Van Non-Airport Shuttle Code of Conduct.

Maybe I will have to give him a tiny tip. Scrounge for change and come up empty.

Get to hotel.

I'm sorry we don't see your reservation here.

That CAN NOT be possible. I booked it months ago.

Fish, you said?


Could it be under another name?

(Like whose? Make me an offer)

Scrolling through phone and of course have several hotel reservation emails from past travels but not this one.

Are you sure it's not Evan Fish?

Yes. I may not be able to see an invisible van driver but I definitely know my own name.

I'm sorry Ma'am.  We have no reservation for you at this hotel.

You're kidding.

Hmmmm. Now what?

Friday, 18 November 2016

It's About the Journey Part One

Hotel Reception, Can I help you?

Yes, Hello. Do you have a shuttle from the airport?

No I'm sorry Ma'am.

Check hotel website again.

Complimentary shuttle.

Call back hotel and ask to speak to someone who is actually standing in a actual hotel.

Yes, we have a complimentary shuttle but not all the way to the airport. When you get out the airport doors, take shuttle to bus terminal and our shuttle will pick you up from the bus terminal. Call us when you get on the bus.

Hi I'm on the bus.

Great. Shuttle will be there in 20 minutes.

Announcement over Bus PA System: Airport express bus tickets are bought when you leave the bus. Save $2 by buying return ticket.

Buy return ticket to save $2. (This is foreshadowing so please remember this nugget for later).

Disembark and look for bright green van.

Not there.

(Wait 20 minutes at bus terminal)

I was feeling guilty about not having American money to tip this guy but with every minute that I stand on the interstate waiting for him, my guilt abates about twenty five cents.

Hi. I called earlier about an airport bus terminal shuttle?  I'm at the bus terminal and I don't see the driver.

Let me check.


He says he's there Ma'am.

Um, ok. I really don't see him.

I'm not sure what to say, Ma'am.

Walk around bus terminal which is smaller than my first apartment.

No bright green van.

Is there any way I can get his phone number?

Sure. (gives me phone number)





Hmmm. Now what?

Thursday, 10 November 2016

Seven Things You Should Know Before Moving to Canada

1. We don't have hulu. At all. We don't have a Canadian version of it. Oh, That's OK, you're thinking. I will just watch my favourite shows on or hbo on demand. Not so fast, cupcake. We don't have those either. Even if they are already loaded on your phone/iPad/blackberry tablet, once you cross the border none of those will work. Don't worry though. If you bang your head against the wall in frustration? Your medical care will be covered.

2. We don't have free refills on soda and coffee. We have them sometimes and in some places, but they aren't ubiquitous. So, like if you go out for pizza, the server may not be appear at your elbow every seven seconds offering to get you some more of that Slice. (Because we don't have Slice either.)

3. Books are more expensive. There is no reason for this. We do not read less, or upside down or inside our igloos. All books, including e-books, cookbooks and used books cost at least 10% more in Canada. Don't worry though, we have libraries. And if you can clear the snow off your car to get to them, I'm sure they're lovely.

4. We have one NBA team and it's in Toronto. Canadians may not necessarily know what March Madness is, much less be prepared to discuss it, bet on it and watch it on hulu. (See? I just mentioned NBA and College ball mixed together! Clearly confused about the finer points.)

5. Hockey, on the other hand, is not a joke up here.

6. We do not have an NFL team. See #5.

7. There is no such thing a Senior Prom or a Homecoming Dance in Canada. If you are in High School, (or you have kids in High School) and you dream of one day pinning a corsage to someone's lapel and posing under a white trellis (or whatever it is Americans do at these things) you may be disappointed. Sure, some schools have dances. Some even have formal dances (where everyone breaks out the "good flannel" just kidding). But Homecoming in the Fall and Prom in the Spring with all the fancy prom-posals and powder blue tuxedos? That's pure apple pie. Oh don't worry, we do have apple pie.

Sunday, 6 November 2016


Here's how airbnb works:

It's an app.

You browse through people's houses and apartments.

You reserve with your credit card.

You message the person with any questions and you make plans to pick up the keys.

Then you stay in their house, use all their stuff and leave it pretty clean but not perfect.

You make plans to give back the keys.

And you leave.

Here's how airbnb worked for us last weekend:

We browsed through and found a place to stay.

We booked.

We messaged a few times and didn't get a response, complained to airbnb and then got a response that day.

We asked if we could check in 30 mins early.

Chad said sure.

We landed and got a message saying 30 mins early no longer worked.

We loitered in a hotel lobby wasting time read each other sub Eurasian sonnets while we waited.

Showed up at the apartment and Chad gave us each a hug. He had fresh flowers, mini chocolate bars and cold water in a carafe (well, three different carafes) by the bed.

We got the keys, asked about parking, he gave us the parking pass.

Next day. We are in his apartment. All our stuff is there, we are out buying sake making the world a better place. We get a message from airbnb saying that Chad has modified our reservation.


He's charging us an extra $20 for parking.

Hmmm. That was not mentioned when we met yesterday and he gave us a hug.

(Yes, there may have possibly been some writing on the wall but there were also miniature Aero bars.)

Write back to airbnb and say that I need an extension because I want to check the original terms of our agreement which I can't do from my phone.

Airbnb says she doesn't know if that option is available.

Chad messages asking for the $20.

Decide not to respond because don't feel comfortable having fight with him when all our stuff is in his apartment. Don't want to come home to find my black converse sneakers with black stitching that I got at Target very fancy and important shoes on the curb.

Leave apartment, parking spot and keys at designated location.

Chad lodges official complaint against us because we did not pay blackmail additional fee levied against us after we had already booked our stay.

Chad states that he is being flexible because instead of charging $40 for two days of parking he is only charging $20.

Airbnb rep named Miggy calls.

Explain situation to her: blah blah not responsive, blah blah mini Kit Kat bars, blah blah parking spot.

Tell her I am planning to pay the $20 because I don't want to have a fight with this guy. Plus, karma.

Miggy turns out to be as cute as her name.

She says. Because you are being so nice about this, we will give you a $15, no $20, no $30 US credit toward your next airbnb stay.

And that my friends, is how airbnb works.

Friday, 4 November 2016

Guinea Pig Abortion: The Next Frontier

Please get your placards ready ladies and gents and non-cis people because we have something new to march for. 

Today we have a guest blog from your friend and mine, disaster on toast,  Outrunning the Cloud (aka V). She has so many great stories to tell, but when I heard this one I was like You'd Better Tell it Yourself. But in italics, so everyone will know it's not me speaking.

She wrote the piece.

Fantastic I said. I'll Post It Tomorrow.

(That was six or eight weeks ago)

So here you have a fantastic story that's been sitting in my inbox for way too long waiting to see the light of day:

Last year, my elderly dogs seemed to be aging at an advanced rate, so I wanted to spare my children the sadness of their impending demise. I let them buy 2 guinea pigs for the low price of 35$ each. We lived happily for over 6 months with 2 geriatric dogs and 2 admittedly adorable guinea pigs. As a bonus, except for big bags of hay, the pigs were quite happy eating all the veggies and fruits my kids didn't eat, so I don't have to take out the compost anymore.

Did you know that it's very difficult to tell what gender a guinea pig is?
Well, we found out quite by surprise 2 months ago, when my daughter screamed from the den: 'Mom, something happened!!!!' I was all prepared for a dead pet, but instead, we now had FOUR, yes, four guinea pigs. Apparently, we had a male and a female.

This provided for a lovely lesson in biology, reproduction and what happens when guinea pigs don't use condoms. When my daughters start dating, I will remind them of what happened to Caramele and Cinnamon when they didn't remember to use protection.

Like any good pet owner, I took the family to the vet to ensure that 1) mother and babies were fine and 2) this would not happen again. I was told that we would need to wait for 6 weeks to find out the gender of the babies and then we would decide. This time, I left the 'sexting' to a professional. (yes, that's really what it's called. It predates cell phones. And it's hilarious when your 11 y.o. says she is going to the vet to get Sexted) Turned out they were both boys, so Mommy, aka Caramel, went it for a hysterectomy yesterday. A guinea pig hysterectomy. That costs 347$.

After Rosh Hashanah lunch, I apologized to my hosts and made a quick phone call to the vet, to make sure that our darling little fluff ball had survived the surgery. I knew something was up when the receptionist told me there was a delay and someone would call me back.
When the phone rang, I was certain I would be told our pig had died in surgery. Nothing, I mean nothing, prepared me for this:
'we had to cancel the hysterectomy because when we opened her up, we found 2 almost full term fetuses'

Pro-life supporters will be happy to hear that apparently, vets cannot perform guinea pig abortions. Hysterectomies yes, abortions no.
So I paid 347$ for a guinea pig hysterectomy that did not happen.
Who's joining me in fighting for the rights of guinea pigs to abort unwanted fetuses? Or was she already too far along? Where do we draw the line? And can I start a fundraiser to pay for the NEXT hysterectomy????

Complaint Department Lessons Learned:

1. The cure for elderly dogs is not young guinea pigs
2. Guinea pig non-abortions are $347 but actual abortions: priceless
3. We think abortion is legal in Canada but clearly our work here is not done
4. When looking for new material, check your inbox. You may have a hilarious guest blog waiting to be posted.

Tuesday, 1 November 2016

Homework For This Week Was To Eavesdrop

We are sitting in the airport waiting for our flight to board when I remember that I have homework. Homework that I could be doing right now, instead of knitting a few more rows on the orange hat or finding out who stashed the body in my latest page turner.

I look around to see if anyone is talking so I can eavesdrop.
No such luck.
Earbuds, earbuds and sleeping.
Oh but wait.

There are two women sitting behind me. I can’t see their faces, but I can hear their voices perfectly. I tune in.

“Did you talk to Lisa recently?”

“No, not really.” Accent. Could be Russian.

“Was it a couple hundred did ya think?”

“It was 700.” Yes. Definitely Russian.

“She’s so good at her job. It’s just her personal life. At least she’s not with Zack anymore. I hear his name come up around the office. Are those dried bananas?”


“Oh plantains.”


 “Awesome. Sure.”

Truth is, I’m more interested in Lisa’s sordid affair with Zack than I am in the plantains. 
 Flight is boarding though, so that’s all we get for now. 
Homework complete.

Wednesday, 21 September 2016

What Happens When You Wear Uncomfortable Shoes to Your Nephew's Bar Mitzvah

  1. They will match your dress perfectly
  2. You will acknowledge they are uncomfortable and still wear them because your outfit needs the texture
  3. After five minutes you will realize that it would have been less painful to snap mousetraps directly onto your feet
  4. After ten minutes you will begin to embrace the pain, thinking about all the colourful imagery this will provide for your writing
  5. You will then realize that your novel already contains the foreshadowing line "I squeezed my potato feet into the french fry shoes" proving that you don't need to actually feel pain to write about it.
  6. At minute thirty you will slip off your shoes, lose one in the pew in front of you and send your eleven year old daughter crawling on the floor after it
  7. Her necklace will then catch on the delicate fabric of her brand new party dress and your fifteen year old niece who is the sister of the Bar Mitzvah boy and very good with her hands will have to extricate the chain
  8. You will rise above the pain for the sake of navy velvet, and wear the shoes for at least two more hours for appearance's sake
  9. You will realize that you may be permanently crippling your feet, and that even though you will lose two critical inches of height, your shoes need to come off
  10. You will remove your shoes again
  11. You will have more blisters on your feet than any of the four times you walked 60km for breast cancer including the year you fell head first into a pile of bricks 
  12. You will wiggle your toes
  13. You will send your eleven year old daughter up to the cloak room to get your flip flops and you will wonder where your two teenage sons are.
  14. You will regret cancelling the pedicure last Wednesday just because you had a major work deadline
  15. You will wear flip flops for the rest of the luncheon
  16. You will bring the beautiful shoes home, wonder where you stashed the receipt and try to figure out when in the name of Lucifer you will have time to return them to the store
  17. Your cousin from out of town will stop over the next morning to say goodbye 
  18. She will try on your shoes, they will fit her perfectly
  19. You will tell her that they are ancient foot binding torture chambers that would not have been out of place at Guantanamo Bay 
  20. Yes she will say. But navy velvet.
  21. "Take them if you want" you will say to her. "It will save me having to find the receipt and return the shoes."
  22. She will take the shoes. She will then say to her daughter "These will be perfect for you."
  23. Your cousin's daughter will tell her mother that she does want the shoes, but doesn't need to bring them on the plane with her to New York. She will get them when she comes home to Toronto for the High Holidays.
  24. Your cousin will put the shoes in her suitcase and keep them for her daughter.
  25. You will close the door behind them, look down at the pillowy blisters on your feet, your cramped baby toes and your cracked heel and you will say to yourself "The shoes weren't so bad."

Wednesday, 14 September 2016

As An Example, Godot

Order lunch delivery to my office to save time, not money.

Projected dumpling delivery time: 55 minutes.

63 minutes later, co-worker asks What Happened to Your Lunch.

Call restaurant.

Lunch on its way.

82 minutes later am gnawing on my left elbow.

Call restaurant again.

Lunch on its way. Oh. No it isn't. Lunch has been delivered.

To whom? Where?

No idea Ma'am. Call delivery company.

(Wish I could)

Have a little chit chat with company chatbot.

Chatbot asks what happened to free spiralizer. (Just kidding. That is a reference to a Twitter contest I hosted last week where a chatbot won a spiralizer.)

Chatbot says order was delivered, clearly to wrong person and gives me refund.

I complain more using key words like: I am unhappy, I am a good customer, This is not the service I am used to.

Chatbot falls right into my hot little hands offers me an additional $20 coupon for my inconvenience.

Take elevator down to restaurants in my building and realize that lunch delivery may be tastier but does not save time at all and for sure doesn't save a dime for my pocketbook.

Feel disappointed that this all worked out because was hoping to get a blog post out of it.

Two hours and thirty five minutes after order was placed.

58 minutes after I was told order was delivered to someone else.

45 minutes after I finished throwing white rice and spicy Chinese tofu down my gullet.

My cell phone rings.

Where are you?

Who is this?

Delivery. I'm in the lobby.

Complaint Lessons Learned:

1. Sometimes dumpling delivery takes longer than a drive to upstate New York. And back.

2. Chatbots may not be able to twirl zucchini but they can still give you a refund. Use key words.

3. If you order food and it's two and a half hours late, it will be freezing and inedible.

3. If something is super late, it doesn't mean it's not coming at all.

Monday, 5 September 2016

Count the Buts

Need new Roar and Roadwork coffee table that is like hulu: Not Available In Canada.


Canadian store will special order Roar and Roadwork for delivery.


Will not deliver to my house.

Are you not a delivery company?

Yes we are. But. Only in US. In Canada we can special order only to store.

But my house is in Canada. So while you are here, couldn't you just pull the truck over and roll the Roar and Roadwork over.

Wish we could, Ma'am.


Unfortunately that is out of the question.

For reasons that I would only understand if this was actually my story and not hijacked from someone who told it to me The only possible coffee table I can live with is this Roar and Roadwork. So I order it from US company for delivery to Canadian store.

Canadian store calls, Roar is in.

Drive to store, double park, lift extra heavy coffee table into my car, drive home.

Unpack coffee table from crate and all is fine.


It's not the coffee table that I ordered.

Call 1-800-Canadian-Coffee-Table-Problems and Customer Service Agent is lovely.

Yes I see here that you ordered the Roar. You do realize that there are two Roars on our website?

Check website while on the phone and I see the second Roar.


This not the Roar I ordered, nor is it the Roar in my living room.

Yes, that makes sense. There are two Roar coffee tables on the web site, and it looks here like we special ordered you a third Roar. This one is only available by special order.

I need to return this Roar and get the actual Roar that I wanted in the first place, I roar state politely.


You are in Canada. We don't deliver to Canada. You would have to create a special order and have the coffee table delivered to the store.

Customer Service Lessons Learned:

1. Moving to Canada seems like a good idea until you need a particular coffee table.

2. Do not take for granted when you order something online that there aren't multiple versions with same name sold by same company with absolutely no differentiation and no way to determine what you've actually purchased until you uncrate it.

3. Just because I say "It happened to me…" doesn't technically mean it happened to me.

4. Just because you are resting your feet on an American piece of furniture does not mean you will be able to watch hulu.

Saturday, 27 August 2016

Going: Part 2 of 2

Cancellation fee is $75?

That's correct.

Is there any room for negotiation here?

Yes Ma'am (patiently). The negotiation is from $300, the regular fee that you SHOULD be charged, to $75, what they are WILLING to charge you.

Even though it's the hotel's error?

I'm looking at this Ma'am, and I don't see any error.

Well. I called to cancel my reservation. To me, that meant all the hotel rooms associated with that reservation. How would I know that only one room was covered?

That's how we do it. Each room has it's own reservation.

Unless I worked for your hotel, I would have no way of knowing that. We are a family travelling together. When I called to cancel my reservation, of course I wanted to cancel all the rooms associated with that reservation.

I see.

(Encouraged, I continue.) I had one reservation number. I thought that all my rooms were linked under the same reservation. Obviously I am not sending my children to the hotel without me Especially since it is so exorbitantly priced.

One moment please Ma'am.


Ok, Ma'am I have spoken to the hotel and they are willing to waive the $75 cancellation fee. Your whole reservation will be refunded.

Excellent.  Thank you very much.

Complaint Lessons Learned:

  1. Pushing too far is not always smart but in this case it worked
  2. In retrospect, sending kids on vacation without us may not have been the worst idea
  3. Complaining is ultimately about the pursuit of justice. If something is unfair, like in this case, your chances of winning are a little higher.

Thursday, 25 August 2016

And Going And Going And Going And: Part 1 of 2

Needed Just-In-Case hotel reservation in Highly Desirable Area.

Booked two rooms.

Sold a kidney. Cost a fortune.

BUT can cancel with no penalty up until Certain Date.

Put Certain Date in phone with several alarms to Be On Safe Side.

Turns out we don't need rooms.

Called to cancel. 

Received cancellation e-mail.

Went on shopping spree because now it's found money.

Two days later received confirmation e-mail.

Hmmm that's strange. Already cancelled this. Why are they confirming?

Called the hotel.

Funny story. Blah blah cancellation blah blah confirmation blah blah so refund please.


? I have cancellation number right here.


Shall I read it to you again? Kilogram Harry Never 90-

I need to transfer you to our Customer Care Centre.

Hello Customer Care. Funny story. Cancellation, Confirmation, etc.

Yes I see that here, but it looks like you only cancelled one of the rooms.

What? Why would I only cancel one room? I called to say no longer going to High Traffic Area so no longer need Exorbitantly Expensive hotel. 

Just one moment Ma'am.


Ok, I've spoken to the hotel and their normal cancellation fee is $300 but they are willing to reduce it to $75 for you.

Now let me pause here to acknowledge that  someone who does not make their living complaining may be willing to accept this dramatic reduction in charges. However, it still struck me as unfair so I kept going.

But unfortunately we have reached our word limit so I will tell you the rest of the story tomorrow.

Remember to subscribe so you never miss a post.

Saturday, 20 August 2016

A Plan That Didn't (Really) Work

Wanted to do a funny series about how to stop your kids from complaining this summer.

Hint: You can't actually STOP kids from complaining, but you can make it less painful.

Plan was to interview unexpected people.

(Example: For column on "You Don't Listen to Me", interview hearing specialist.)

Problems Encountered:
1. The pieces didn't really work

Possible Reasons:
1. Too long
2. Too boring
3. People didn't get the joke (e.g., why would you interview a hearing specialist for a column on listening?)
4. Too much else going on in the world (e.g., let's make fun of American Presidential Candidates, Who Cares about the kids)
5. Timing (kids are away for the summer, pass the tequila)

Other Problems Encountered:
1. Interviewees bailed at last minute
2. Didn't have a Plan B, C, etc

End Result (half-empty):
1. Three columns at her Magazine, pathetic and alone
2. Excellent interviewees may screen my future calls
3. Social Media makes everything worse

End Result (half-full):
1. Learned from mistakes re: need to book more interviewees next time
2. Gained experience in interviewing those that showed up
3. Generated additional content which can always be used later
4. Topic for today's blog

Nu, already, so where can I read these columns?

1. here
2. here
3. And here

Friday, 19 August 2016

Silver Lining 4: Where the Story Ends

Hmmmm that's strange.

(I'm afraid to ask but have no choice:) What?

I just pulled out the Opera tickets? For Friday?


And it says here: Keep this number for when you Place Your Order. Does this mean I didn't place my order? Is it possible that we don't actually have any Opera tickets?

I don't know, let me see.  But FYI I'm just recuperating from pneumonia, so even if you find them, there's no way I can possibly…

Did I forward the tickets to you?


Did I forward the tickets to you?


(There are eight of us. Imagine this question repeated and responded to with variations on the phrase No I Don't Have The Opera Tickets).

Finally, someone says: Nope. Check your Visa statement.

I bought them with American Express.

At this point we aren't sure if you bought them at all.  Fine. Check your American Express statement.

No Opera tickets.

Not the six Opera tickets we thought we had.

Not on the Friday we thought they were for.

No need for the pneumonia I was relying on as an excuse a valid medical reason for not going.

Happiest ending of an Opera story ever.

Tuesday, 16 August 2016

Silver Lining: 3

Amy, you may not be able to go to the Opera after all.

I know what you mean. I am still a little (mild cough) short of breath.

You actually sound fine, that's not what I meant. 


We are, what, eight people?

Yeah. I think so.

I only got six Opera tickets.

Phew. That's too bad. I was getting kind of nervous that there was no way out excited about it. 

Sorry. I feel terrible. I don't know who I wasn't counting.

That's OK. I completely understand. I'm terrible at numbers too. In fact, my business card has a tip chart on the back so that I'll always know how much to tip the pizza guy.

But you'll be all alone while we're at the Opera.

Yeah, sounds terrible. An evening to myself with absolutely no one to answer to. Yuck.

I'll sit this one out with you, says C. We can get Aperol Spritzers.

Even better.

Lessons Learned:

1. Even when you think a story is over, it may keep on going
2. Aperol trumps Opera in the card game of life
3. When your Grade Nine teacher said Math skills would be important later, she was right

Thursday, 11 August 2016

Silver Lining: 2

Don't worry, you don't have to cancel your vacation.

No wonder they call you the cough Good doctor.

You just have to bring this inhaler, this inhaler, these antibiotics and this special over the counter pill.

Cough. Cough. Thank you.

And stay out of the hot sun.


Oh, and also, try and rest whenever you can.

Cough. Cough. Not. A. Problem.

(Fast forward 12-15 hours and make yourself an iced coffee)

Of all the places to recuperate, I am probably in one of the best. Surrounded by some of my favourite people in the world.

And, on the bright side, if anyone wants to do something I don't want to do  go to the Opera, I will just say Oh I'm Sorry. I wish I could. But Unfortunately (cough) I've been recently diagnosed with (dramatic pause) pneumonia.

What about cooking lessons? What about making cheese? The beach? Hiking through caves?

Oh I will be well enough for all of that. But if I have to sit in a chair and listen to an Aria, my lungs may just react. Plus, I don't want to disturb any of the other Opera goers.

(Fast forward 12-15 hours and make yourself an aperol spritzer)

Great news. We have Opera tickets for Friday night.

Oh I'm sorry, I couldn't possibly. I have just been (weak cough, antibiotics now working) diagnosed with pneumonia.

Which lobe? Higher or lower?

Dunno. But something important and non-opera-going.

What anti-biotic are you taking?

Pass package over.

Oh, Opera tickets aren't till Friday. Don't worry, you will be fine by then.

Lessons Learned:

1. If you travel with a doctor, you may get what you deserve
2. Opera tickets may not be as hard to come by as one would think
3. 200 words don't go as far as they used to. End of story to come tomorrow.

Wednesday, 10 August 2016

Silver Lining: 1

Cough, cough, cough, cough.

Dr. does thorough examination and writes on prescription pad: Bad Cold. Patient would like Day Off.

Hands me piece of paper.

Cough, cough, cough, cough.

Brush off indignity and go back to office. Work all cough day.


Sister and Husband insist that I go back to clinic because (cough) cough is persisting.

Go back to clinic.


Nurse says I think I know you from somewhere.

I say Maybe. I used to work at blah, blah, cough, blah.

Oh, yeah that's it she says. You are Really Sick.

You think? I cough. Dr. said all I had was bad cold.

You need to see another Dr.

Good Dr. sends me for stat chest x-ray to rule out pneumonia.

Bad news.

Lungs showing cough evidence of pneumonia.

Oh this is a cough problem.

I'm cough cough going on vacation tonight.

Oh NO Amy this does not sound good. What did you do? Where did you go? Where is the silver lining?

I would love to answer all your questions.

Unfortunately, I've been getting feedback that my blog posts are too long.

So please tune in tomorrow for the next 200 words.

Saturday, 28 May 2016

This Is Why We Can't Have Nice Things

Husband biking a mountainous 80km tomorrow so deserves nice dinner with lots of carbs.

Other dinner guests also could use comfort food at this moment.

Call Very Reliable Italian Restaurant and take-out place with the burgundy awning that I have never done business with, but that everyone raves about. 

Woman On Phone exceedingly patient with me as we review menu items that need to be ordered in advance and are therefore unavailable to me eight hours before I need them, menu items that are mispriced, and those that are only available for large catering jobs.

Finally settle on a Vegetarian Lasagna for 20 (we are 12, but hungry), a side dish and two fancy desserts.

Will not deliver for less than $250. We will need your credit card number to process the order. Oh, and Lasagna will not be hot when you pick it up, says Phone. 

Sure - blah blah, expiry, blah blah code on back. And no problem, I can reheat it. How long will that take?

An hour and a half. It's not a reheat. We assemble it, and you will have to cook it at home. We will have it ready at 5 o'clock.

Lasagna will be ready at 5. Guests coming at 6:30. With a longer than usual drinks period, this will work out exactly.

At 5pm I am walking out of my office and getting into my car.

At 5:40pm there is absolutely no parking anywhere near the restaurant.

Call to ask if anyone can bring it out to my car while I double park.


Is the order ready and waiting?

Yeah, yeah, no problem.

So I can just run in and it will be there?

Yeah, yeah, no problem.

Call boys at home and ask them to preheat the oven so that will waste no time getting that lasagna a-cookin'. 

17 year old son B says Mom you are being ridiculous. Why don't you just order pizza, it's Dad's favourite food anyway, and forget about the Lasagna.

I can't just forget about the Lasagna! I already paid for it! (possibly may have wailed) And I couldn't find a spot to pull over on Sherbrooke and Draper  in front of the restaurant. Now I'm like 10 blocks away! 

Mom, B says gently, easing me into a straitjacket, you can freeze the Lasagna. Why don't I take care of ordering the pizza, you pick up T from school, and we can have the Lasagna next Friday.

Oh that's so smart. Ok, ya, that's what I'll do. Thank you for saving the day.

Get T from school and pull over across the street in bus lane.

T goes in to get order and says, Mom what if they gave away the order what do I do.

There's no way they gave away our order, I paid for it.

30 seconds later T is on the curb saying They gave away our order.

Call Very Reliable.

Yes sorry we gave away your order by mistake. I can give you a meat lasagna.

(OH perfect. So the vegetarians will eat meat tonight because you gave away my paid for order.)

That's not going to work.

Look, I'm sorry for the mix up.  I can give you two 6-person lasagnas for the same price as you were paying.

Why would I take 12 servings for the same price as the 20 person I ordered and paid for?

Look ma'am I'm really sorry. This isn't my fault. Alright fine, I will give you three 6 person lasagnas.

Um, then I will still be short. No thank you. I will still take the side dish and desserts.


Complaint Lessons Learned:

1. Math skills essential in Vegetarian Lasagna serving computation
2. Very often when someone says This Isn't My Fault, it's completely their fault
3. 17 year old boys are good at ordering pizza
4. Cookies and ice cream picked up from 24 hour convenience store weren't half bad. Maybe should have tried their lasagna.

Saturday, 30 April 2016

Got Refund for Shipping But Still Jonesing for a Bun

New job is in office building next to a mini-mall that has a nail place, a Tim Horton's and a bakery that smells so amazing that to walk by every morning is to gain 11 pounds.

On my way home when bakery calls me.

We have your package.

I didn't order a cake?

No, your package ma'am. It was delivered here.

Did I drop something? My mind does a quick inventory of things that could have possibly escaped my grasp as I salivated in the window of the buns place sashayed past the bakery nonchalantly.

Am coming up blank.

Your package ma'am. Did you order something on-line?

As a matter fact yes I did.

Can you come pick it up?

Why would my package be delivered to you?

I don't know ma'am, it wasn't my shift. Boss just asked me to call. Can you come pick it up?

Next morning crunch my matza as enthusiastically as I can, knowing that I am going to have to stop at bakery to pick up my package yet really can't eat a thing.

Wait in line between guy in plaid shirt  buying pink Hello Kitty mochi and three girls in mini skirts and high boots giggling over their tray of Cha Siu Bao pork buns and bubble tea.

Try not to breathe too deeply because just being in the presence of all these pastries is a serious calorie risk.

Serving person goes in the back, and retrieves my package.

Puts it on the counter. 

I just don't understand why this package was delivered to you?

I don't know ma'am, it wasn't my shift. 

I reach out my arms to take it.

Not so fast.

Before you take the package, ma'am we need to see a picture ID.

You're kidding. 

You want me to show ID for my package that you accepted even though it has neither your name or your address on it?

Well, we wouldn't want it to end up in the wrong hands.

Monday, 22 February 2016

Just Ask

Husband buying very boring office supplies, lets call them sealant valves (which do not really exist, I have made them up because I don't remember what he was actually buying and it is not salient to this story).

On-line price list says:

  1. Buy 1-100 for $11.80
  2. Buy 101-499 for $11.79
  3. Buy 500-999 for $11.78
  4. Orders over 1000 for $11.77
Husband picks up phone and calls company.

There is not a lot of variance in your pricing. I need to buy a bunch of sealant valves. Is there anything you can do?

First, we need to know what sealant valves are. I don't see them here in the catalogue.

Oh, it's a term my wife made up. She means the boring office supplies that I need to fix dishwashers.

Sure, that makes sense. Ok, I will speak to my manager.

*Husband waits 30 seconds*

Yes. My manager says we can take 20% off the list price.

Complaint Lessons Learned
1. Sometimes you get stuff just by asking for it
2. Not everyone likes the phone, but for saving money it can work better than e-mail
3. Wonder what mark-up is since they can take 20 points off without missing a beat
4. Husband not only makes the best coffee but is also a fantastic complainer

Monday, 15 February 2016

Knitting Complaint

Let me preface this by saying how much I appreciate all of your charity knitting and support for all of my projects.

Today's post may possibly be a slight exaggeration just to have something to blog about on this freezing Monday to strike a mirthful note in the hearts of many while gingerly making a point.

Now, for the Knitting Complaint

(Not that I would ever complain about knitting)

Was asked to provide 20 hand knit hats for homeless men for local charity project.

Sounded the siren call of all knitters and six days later was sitting on N's couch with popcorn in one hand, a diet coke in the other and a half a homeless man's hat on my #7 circulars in the other. (Yes that's one hand too many. Maybe explains difficulty in completing project.)

What (Some) Knitters Said 
1. Here's a neck warmer. I didn't feel like knitting a hat but homeless men need neck warmers too, right?

2. Here are slippers. I made them for myself but they are kind of baggy. I guess the homeless men can use slippers too?

3. Here's a pink and yellow striped hat. Maybe there are some homeless women? Or homeless men who are secure in their masculinity and want to make a fashion statement? You know like hetero men who wear skirts? Or nail polish?

4. Here's the hat I was supposed to give you for the charity project you supported in 2012.

5. Can I have an extension? I'm sure the homeless men can use hats in summer, too.

What I Responded
Sure, of course and no problem.  Any hat, scarf or cat sweater that you would like to donate will no doubt be appreciated by the under-housed community of our great urban centre.

So, Where's The Complaint
I think it's interesting that when asked to give charity so many of us want to give what WE want, not necessarily what the CHARITY needs. 

When someone calls and asks for help - and it can't be easy to make that call - let's at least give them what they want.

Monday, 8 February 2016

Exams, Complaints and a Pasta Recipe

Click here to read my latest post for about why grocery shopping on an empty stomach is wrong.

Monday, 1 February 2016

Easy Cinnamon Chocolate Cake Not So Easy After All

Friday night had company for supper and baked Easy Chocolate Cinnamon cake, double recipe, in XL pyrex.

Company did not finish cake.

OMG Is that your complaint? I agree. I hate being stuck with leftover cake. Who wants to have cake lying around. Especially chocolate. That's the worst.

Saturday morning I wake up and thugs my teenagers and their friends have eaten the entire middle of the cake leaving only a narrow strip of crusty cake pieces on either side.

OH Man. No wonder you are complaining. I feel your pain. Crusty chocolate is just not worthy. Need more gooey chocolate.

Later that same day am making conversation with Almost Complete Stranger who mentions that she has two older teenage boys still living at home plus a daughter who is a serious athlete.

It must be IMPOSSIBLE to keep them fed, I say sympathetically thinking about my chocolate cake crust. My kids and their friends eat every piece of chicken that isn't nailed down. (Not that we nail chicken down, it's an expression.)

Well, says Almost Complete Stranger. I used to have four boys. One died during open heart surgery when he was 17 almost 18.


And the other was murdered. Shot and killed in an alley. Wrong place at the wrong time.


So I guess keeping the other ones fed is the least of your problems then? I actually said. And we both laughed.

Sunday morning I wake up and XL pyrex is in fridge, covered in tin foil, but completely empty. All the cake was gone.

Never felt so lucky in my life.

Morals of the Story (Choose One)

1. Yes, complaining is fun, but never forget how lucky you have it.

2. Even when faced with the dark tragedy of a complete stranger, a joke may be appropriate.

3. Just because Complete Stranger gets shot in gun fight doesn't mean you can't put finished cake pan in the sink.

Monday, 25 January 2016

Move Over Madoff, New Game In Town

Treat self to upscale manicure in nicer than usual neighbourhood.

Back into parking space with enough room to land a Boeing 747 Dreamliner.

Lady sitting in passenger seat of ScreamingYellow car behind me.

Gets out of car and says You hit my son's car and my son is not going to be happy.

Didn't hear or feel anything but then again am not the best driver so let's investigate further.

Oh I'm really sorry, I say. Let's see the damage.

She points to a dent at the bottom of her son's bumper.

I look at my bumper. There is no Screaming Yellow on it. Also, my bumper is miles higher than hers because I drive an SUV and her car is very close to the ground. If I backed into her son's car, the dent would be on the hood of the car.

She asks me for a pen so that we can exchange information.

Sure. Let me hand you a pen so that you can take my license and registration for a car accident that I wasn't even in.

I don't think so, lady.

Get back into my car and find parking space far away from Screaming Yellow.

Walk past same spot and see Screaming Yellow accusing next person backing in of denting her son's car.

OH MY G-D Screaming is pulling a scam.

Sits and waits in car and accuses women of denting her car until someone probably pulls some cash out of their Gucci wallet just to make the problem go away.

Complaint Tie-Ins

1. Con artists should carry their own pens or at least put info in an iPhone like everyone else.

2. True your car won't end up on a set of cement bricks, but parking in nice neighbourhood could still carry with it own set of dangers so please stay on your game.

3. No such thing as free lunch when it comes to mani/pedis. More expensive manicure was actually much nicer and lasted longer than cheaper walk-in counterparts.

Monday, 18 January 2016

Happy Ending

Friend's Husband orders case of Hand cream.

Never arrives.

Husband calls Customer Service.

They say they sent it.

Husband calls back.

Customer Service says they have proof Husband signed for it.

Husband's hands still shockingly dry.

Hand cream Customer Service produces two signed receipts from small towns they have never been to - and would not purposefully go to -  unless possibly starring in an episode of the Amazing Race.

Husband says to Wife: Am Desperate for Hand Cream. You Figure This Out. And passes her the baton, along with his grocery list, dry cleaning receipt and dirty socks.

Wife calls Customer Service almost enough to warrant a restraining order with an alarming frequency until finally speaks to Hand cream Customer Service Agent and explains urgency of situation.

Would you like a refund?

No. I would like my Husband's Hand cream.

Can I interest you in some of our newer products?

No. I would like my Husband's Hand cream.

Hand cream Customer Service Agent confirms that package has been traced and that it will be a few weeks before the order can be shipped because there are some internal procedures that need to be re-engineered.

Friend says she has no doubt that there are processes to be re-engineered. For example, you need to send the product to the person who orders it, not some mysterious address thousands of kilometres away.

However, your internal processes are not my concern, she says.

My husband's lack of Hand cream is, she also says.

So please. Please. Let me know How he can have the hand cream by tomorrow.

Hand cream Customer Service Agent says OK. You win. I will write the label by hand myself. I will drive the hand cream to the closest courier service. Tomorrow at this time, your Husband's hands will be downright silky.

Complaint Lessons Learned

1. Hand cream is not to be taken internally therefore internal processes none of our business.

2. You need to ask for what you want as resolution to your complaint (Hand cream by tomorrow).

3. If you are clear on what you will and won't accept sometimes you can get the Customer Service Agent to pull a pen out of her pocket and fill the label out herself.

3. The key to a happy marriage will sometimes surprise you.

Monday, 11 January 2016

Overheard At A Shiva

I pick her up, she jumps in the car and is like MOM! The movie we saw in after-school today was sooooo inappropriate. So, I'm like, what movie? I mean like I normally let my kids watch like, I don't know, like Two and A Half Men or whatever. So for her to freak out like that, I'm like Shit this must be really bad.

K, go on.

So she says to me, It wasn't just the Grade Threes MOM. There were Grade Twos there and I think the Grade One class. Oh no wait. The Grade One class was in the gym. Maybe that was the kindergarteners. Anyway Ms. Fairchild's class was there, and Mme. Lamontagne's class and MOM I really think you would NOT have liked the movie.

What movie?? I can't imagine where this story is going.

K, hold on. So she says to me: They let us watch Bridesmaids.

BRIDESMAIDS? ARE YOU SERIOUS? OH MY GOD WHAT THE HELL COULD THEY POSSIBLY HAVE BEEN OH MY GOD so whadja do? Didja call the school? I would've, oh jeez. I don't know what I would've done.

So I call the school and I speak to the Principal and I'm like, Listen. We usually love the after-school program blah blah blah and the counsellors are usually so blah blah and I'm so sorry I have to call you about this.

OH MY GOD you SO did the right thing. So was she like Oh my god or was she just like whatever?

Well she asked me like So what movie was it? And I told her Bridesmaids and she was like Are you sure? That's really strange. That really doesn't sound like something they would do.

So I go back to Fake Kids' Name and I say Are you sure the movie was called Bridesmaids? And she goes to me - are you ready for this -

I'm dying. 

She goes to me - it was something with a bride. Oh yeah, now I remember. The movie was called Princess Bride.

Complaint Lessons Learned

1. Collect all the appropriate data before you lodge a complaint
2. Start with after-school. Work your way up to the Principal only if necessary
3. If your star witness is an eight year old you may have a problem
4. Even at the most tragic of shivas, if you listen hard enough you will hear a funny story