I'm up in arms over a couple of things so thought I'd spew about them here before my head explodes!
Last weekend, we had a birthday party for our 2-year-old son. It went well (no food disasters or kids whining/crying/fighting, etc.) except for one incident. For the "entertainment" portion of the party, we took all the kids over to the large neighborhood park to play on the playground equipment and we also had a
pinata filled with candy and stickers and little toys.
All is going well and the kids are politely (considering they are all age 2 - 4) waiting their turns to take a whack at the pinata when these two dogs WHO ARE NOT ON LEASHES come racing through our group and jump all over one little boy.
Now, the dogs were only playing, but they were completely wild and romping around and in the process knocked the boy down and jumped all over him before any of the adults could react to pull them off. I look up to see the idiot owner halfway across the park WATCHING THIS HAPPEN AND NOT DOING ANYTHING ABOUT IT!! Finally as he realizes that we have grabbed his dogs by their collars and are dragging them back over to him he finally stops conversing with whoever he was talking to and comes ambling over meet us and
demands to know what the hell we are doing with his dogs.
DH says he always thought the whole "Exorcist head spinning thing" was a movie trick but he swears up and down that I accomplished it for real at that moment. Now, I am a serious dog lover and will go to a lot of lengths to keep dogs out of the clutches of the dog catcher, but I told this moron that if he didn't leash his dogs right that minute that I was going to be on the cell phone to
animal control faster than he could say "lawsuit." He has no idea how lucky he is that the child was only frightened and not injured in any way...although I would count it as an injury if the poor kid ends up being phobic of dogs for the rest of his life. He also tried to argue that the leash law didn't apply to the park...dumbass apparently can't READ as there's a giant sign right at the park entrance explaining that dogs must be on leashes or owners are subject to tickets and fines.
OK..that's one, now here's the other...
We have a 2002 Saturn VUE (our other car is also a Saturn) and we've been loyal customers since 1997. Now, our VUE started behaving a bit strangely in November in that it would just not start or else would lose power while being driven. So, we took it in to the dealership (still under warranty at this point) to have it fixed. They (supposedly) looked at it and said they couldn't find anything wrong with it but that they had been having similar
problems due to the "winter additives" that are put in fuel to keep it from freezing during this time of year. Uh, okay, yeah, whatever.
Take the car home and drive it a few more days and problem happens again. Take the car back, pitch a fit and demand that it be fixed. So they keep it for 3 DAYS, replace 1 damn sensor and tell us it's fixed.
Okay, fine. Drive car for another 3-4 weeks which brings me to last Friday night where I'm in rush hour traffic w/ my little one in the back seat and the car TOTALLY dies in the middle of an intersection. Not only does this put us in danger of being smashed by all the traffic around us, but now I have to worry that some pissed-off wacko is going to do more than honk and scream obscenities at us for being stuck in the intersection.
DH is an hour away stuck on the freeway coming home from his new job and my parents (who live nearby) have ONCE AGAIN forgotten to turn on their cell phone so I can't contact them either.
Miraculously, after 20 minutes of sitting there while I'm frantically calling tow trucks and friends to try to get help, the
car finally starts (thank you, God!) and I make it home.
Now DH has to take time Saturday morning while we are in the midst of party preparations to take the car down to the dealership again. He calls them to find out what time they open and gets their normal greeting with their hours listed. So, he heads down to the dealership and what does he find when he gets there? Our dealership is GONE...as in skedaddled, vamoosed, slunk away
like a thief in the night.
There's no sign saying they've moved or providing info on another dealership to contact, etc. DH is now incredibly pissed off...which is the mood I want him in as a horde of toddlers are
about to descend on us for a birthday party...uh, NOT!
So, we decide we can't do anything about the car today, come on home and we'll handle it on Monday as car does now seem to be drivable. Sunday he takes it to put gas in it and the damn thing dies at the gas station. We call Saturn headquarters to find out THEY DON'T EVEN KNOW ONE OF THEIR DEALERSHIPS IS GONE! They refer us to the next closest location which is 40 minutes away (oh joy) so he calls them and they say it will be an hour to get a tow truck to him. I can't go pick him up because I've got the kidlet
and the car seat is...you guessed it...in the VUE.
He finally gets the tow up to the new dealership and asks them for a loaner car (which our old dealership always provided as part of the warranty) only to be told "nope, sorry, we don't do loaners, but you can go to Enterprise tomorrow and rent a car and we'll reimburse you for it). Now how the hell is he supposed to get home?
I end up having to call my poor dad and send him up there to pick up Dean and bring him back. Great - everyone's day has now been totally ruined as this pretty much took the entire day to get worked out. Plus, now dad has to come over at 7 am on Monday
to pick up the kidlet and I and take him to daycare and me to work. Dad is thrilled about that.
Get a call from the dealership around noon today that car is fixed and I should come pick it up. Dad drives me up there where they tell me that our full warranty expired 11 days ago and that we are now on the extended warranty that we bought and therefore we have $100 deductible and can I please whip out my credit card and pay them the $100.
I flip out. I'm normally pretty meek and mild-mannered and in a lot of situations I probably would've just said okay and paid the damn $100 but after the dog incident and all this other crap, I've reached the end of my fuse. It's a long fuse, but trust me, you don't want to get to the end of it. Dad actually had to take me out into the service bay to calm me down and tell me he's never seen me behave like this before and do I need to get a drink or something.
I calm down enough to go back inside and explain through gritted teeth that no, I'm not paying $100 for something that is a recurring problem and that it's not my fault the other dealership never fixed it properly and that at this point I'm a very unhappy customer and what can they do to make me a happy customer. The service manager actually has the guts to look me in the eye and tell me that he can offer me a free oil change next time we come in.
Yes, that's right, this dimwit actually thought that the privilege of driving 40 minutes for a free oil change (which my DH does for free in our garage at home anyway) would make up for all the crap we've been through for the last couple of months. Uhh...don't think so, Sparky! He had NO IDEA how close to total death and destruction he was at that moment but fortunately for him, my dad intervened and said "I don't think that's going to do it for us. You've got 5 minutes to think of something else."
I have no idea what was going to happen in 5 more minutes besides me going even more insane, but I guess it worked because Vince skedaddled his big, fat hiney back to his boss's office while my dad continued to try to talk me down off the ledge of insanity I was on. They finally agreed to call Saturn corporate to see if
they could waive the $100 which Saturn agreed to do but "not because the problem was re-occurring...only because you're just a few days past your warranty." Yeah, whatever, just give me my car keys, asswipe. Oh, they also tried to charge me $30 for the rental car that I never even had time to go get...got that taken off, too.
Needless to say I am no longer a Saturn proponent, but one thing I can say about them (at least for this week anyway)...Saturn's ma bitch :-)
Normally I wouldn't make a big deal out of this, but since I'm usually not someone who stands up for herself too much, I'm kinda proud of this (maybe you could tell?) Anyway, more jewelry news to come, shortly!
KJ - don't mess with me!