Archive for May, 2008

Dear Comcast…

May 24th, 2008 by under Uncategorized. No Comments.

We have been your loyal customers since 2001. The moment we got off dial-up internet, we called you. We wanted the fancy, supersonic-type internet connection. And as long as we’ve had cable, we’ve had Comcast. At one point, we even upgraded from basic cable to the digital signal and fancy cable box. I’m not sure you understood the level of commitment we were making to you. We expected you to be as invested in this relationship as we were. To prove that point, we even switched our telephone number over from Verizon (we had been with Bell Atlantic since man made it to the moon and rocket scientists wore short-sleeve dress shirts) to your delightful Comcast bundle. If that’s not wearing a chastity belt declaring our sole loyalty to you, we have no idea what “soulmate” means.

We’re not saying this relationship hasn’t had its ups and downs. But we’ve made it through the rough patches. We thought our relationship had grown stronger as a result. And then, you made the worst mistake you’ve ever made. Two weeks ago, we called to schedule an account transfer – we wanted the same delightful Comcast services at our new home, two blocks down the street from our rental home. And when your lovely installer pulled up to our home in his white-and-red van, we were overjoyed to be reconnected to the world. That is, until we found out you were assigning us a new phone number. You took away the number we’ve had since we moved to Maryland in 1992.

We called you immediately, thinking we had lost our beloved phone number forever. That kind of panic over a land line is unusual. Kids this generation just don’t have the same work ethic and commitment to land lines that people used to. We knew it would take some time to resolve the situation. But four transferred calls later and 30 minutes of elevator music, our souls were still adrift in Comcast Purgatory. Eventually, we thought the situation was resolved. Alas, we were mistaken…and spent four hours the next day speaking to different representatives. Apparently you felt the need to create three separate work orders – one to transfer our account, one to change our phone number to a new one, and one to carry our old phone number over. And we are just as lost as you. Was this ever in the fine print of our prenuptial agreement? Can we expect you to provide us with the same services you did before we moved? What happens to a phone number deferred? Does it dry up like a raisin in the sun? Or does it fester like a sore – and then run?

This is worse than when we first hooked up with you. We stayed with you through all of your growing pains. We knew it would be difficult to enter a relationship with someone much younger than we were. But we took a risk. We endured months of on-and-off service, the sound turning on-and-off in tune with the flickering picture.

This is also worse than the time we turned in our equipment on your orders and received a bill for our failure to do so just a few months later. It’s a good thing we’re pack rats and we kept the receipt. That sure wasn’t covered in our prenup. It’s starting to feel like all of our digressions are covered in that agreement, but none of yours are.


The Lin family


a celtic revival?

May 8th, 2008 by under Uncategorized. No Comments.

I remember when Larry Bird wore Boston Celtic green and white. And – to go back to high school slang – he was the bomb. Tall, weedy Larry shot three-pointers and made easy layups like it was nobody’s business. And what about those calf socks and basketball booty shorts?

Back in the day (i.e. middle or high school) I thought Kevin Garnett was the bomb. One of my internet messenger screen names was twolvesfan[insert favorite jersey number here].Ok, so I was a tomboy. Ok, so really, I’m a grown up tomboy. I admit it. But it always wins me points with the boys (Andy likes it). And along with many other fans, I loved the Minnesota Timberwolves for no other reason than KG, The Kid.

Then K.G. left the T-wolves and even the faithful Wally Szczerbiak left. And KG went to Beantown. I’ve never been a fan of Boston (the city) for no reason whatsoever. I find Red Sox fans obnoxious (to be fair, it might just be the people I know).

But I can’t help but wonder if the Celtics can live up to the hype. Will they be the new dynasty?

Good thing my favorite color is green.


may madness

May 7th, 2008 by under Uncategorized. No Comments.

It’s the official May MBA Playoff – the championships are at stake – except there’s no tangible prize. I know, it sounded pretty sexy up until that point, didn’t it?

In Operations Management, we were running a factory that produced some kind of microprocessors (or something like that). The point was to be the team with the highest cash reserves at the end. Unfortunately, the team that seemed to be aptly named, “cashmaximizers,” didn’t win. They came in 9th.

Let’s not talk about how my team did. But at least we beat the dummy team “donothing.” Supposedly, we made better management decisions (but I don’t think I’ll define or quantify what “better” means).

In Global Supply Chain Management, we’re playing a game as computer resellers or suppliers. The point there is to be the most profitable. And the game got locked up in quarter 4 (each week in real time is equivalent to one quarter in Marketplace6 time) when a reseller snatched up 75 percent of the available supply, leaving three resellers to squabble among one another for the remainder.

And no, I wasn’t in the team that snapped up the market share. But hey, at least I’m consistent. And reliable. You can count on me to never be at the top in a team simulation, but end up in the middle.

Seriously, though, these games weren’t really my cup of tea. I heard there was another simulation in Marketing Strategy, but I’m not taking that class at the moment. I’ll have to fill you in on the joys of simulation #234,348 next year. Yes, beloved readers, I will return for a second year of blogertainment. Do not worry.

I’m feeling a little overloaded at the moment. We’ve got a paper due on Monday for ethics (a social audit), a paper due on Wednesday for Strategic Management (a case analysis), a paper due in a week or so for Operations Management (an analysis of our team strategy), and a paper due in Supply Chain (an analysis of our team strategy).

On top of that, my family is moving – to a new house (one that we actually own instead of rent) – and you can bet I’ll be absorbed in that for the next few weeks.


the particle board of meat

May 5th, 2008 by under Uncategorized. No Comments.

Lunch meat photo from sxc.huI had dinner last night with my older brother and mom when an interesting topic came up.

I’ve never liked lunch meat very much. Something about those thinly sliced, perfectly smooth, salty meat shreds just doesn’t sit well with me. Don’t get me wrong; I’m no tree-hugging granola eater. I like recycling, I like taking care of the environment, but I’m just like the next person. Sometimes I throw away plastic bottles or aluminum cans. And life goes on, although I do feel the nagging of yuppie guilt.

We had some terrible roast beef at a buffet – the dry kind. (I’ll be honest in saying that I like my beef bleeding – medium rare, sometimes rare, it’s good). But we started talking about roasts, my brother swore they freshly roast their own meat at Arby’s. I don’t even like Arby’s, and I’m not sure if they actually roast their meat in the store or not. One thing I do believe is that their roast beef sure isn’t the kind you slice off the roast, straight out of the oven. It’s got that smooth, processed look.

And it occurred to me – lunch meat is the particle board of meats. It’s usually inexpensive. It’s made of filler. It’s probably held together with glue. And isn’t that true of all processed meats? Think about it. The oven-roasted turkey that comes in the Oscar Meyer yellow package? It’s not like the roast pops off the turkey in a nice, cylindrical shape. It’s ground-up turkey pieces that are smashed together, roasted, and sliced.

Mmmm…particle board.