Friday, November 21, 2008

Time to die now

It feels wrong, in this fragile and troubled economy, to wish for a business to go bankrupt. But there is something almost Darwinian at work in the economy right now. The big three automakers have behaved like dinosaurs for decades and that's why the recent troubles are beginning to look a bit like a certain comet or asteroid that hit Earth 75 million years ago.

They're not dead, far from it. But you get the feeling they're going to look a bit more like alligators that brontosauruses at the end of it.

Still, I'm afraid I have to wish for a company to die now. It's time for them to die, really. Because if you're in the business of deliver parcels and you fail not once, not twice, but apparently now three time to deliver the same item then you are to stupid to exist anymore.

Or, to put it more bluntly, UPS couldn't find its ass with both hands, a 10-foot high mirror and a GPS tracking device all of the while standing in the middle of the West Edmonton Mall, during Christmas rush, screaming, "Hey, has anyone seen my ass?!"

This is a incompetent company that apparently employs morons. I swear to God, I'm wondering if they do IQ tests when hiring people and only pick the ones who fail it.

"Wow dude. That's harsh. Surely they can't be that stupid."

Why yes. Yes, they most certainly can. Allow me to explain.

My disdain for UPS goes back to last year when my laptop managed to get from China to Montreal faster than it did from Montreal to Iqaluit. In fact, it was missing long enough, and UPS was that unhelpful, that I called Apple and told them it was time to crack the whip. Apple cracked the whip and, like magic, the computer showed up the next day.

So anyway, let's travel back to a more recent time. Specifically October 22 of this year. That's when I placed another order with Apple. I ordered an iPod Nano as part of Cathy's parents Christmas gift (they know they're getting it, so I'm not reveal state secrets here) and a copy of Microsoft Word for Mac. Cathy's been wanting a copy of this for her computer for awhile now so I figured, what the hell, let's order it.

During the order process I told Apple I would prefer it not be shipped by UPS because of the troubles last year. They said they would see what they could do. And I thought no more on it.

Then on or about Oct. 27 the iPod arrived at the local post office via Fed Ex. I hate saying one of the good things about Arctic Express's warehouse burning down is that Fed Ex and other couriers now ship directly to the post office but, ummm, it is. Arctic Express was, well, let's be kind to the recently fallen, very erratic at getting these packages to the right people in a timely fashion.

Still, I had my iPod, and very promptly. No MS Word, however. I thought no more on it and figured it would show up in a day or so.

Some time passes and I notice I still don't have the copy of MS Word, which is weird. That's when I crack open the Apple email and notice that MS Word, for some reason, had been shipped by UPS. And they were having troubles delivering it.

Why?

Because they had shipped it to Inuvik.

Let that one sink in for a moment, if you will. Same labelling and everything gets put on both packages. Fed Ex gets the iPod to Iqaluit, no problem. UPS sends the the package to the other side of the Goddamn country!

Anyway, on November 6 I decide to take matters into hand and call Apple. Because calling UPS is a waste of time. From my previous experience, they will not give a shit and I will talk to someone who sounds like they're 15 years old and live in India.

So I'm chatting with Apple. To their credit, they don't even try and save the package. Acknowledging that UPS has pretty well screwed the pooch on this one, they send me out a brand new copy of the software. "Cool," I say. "But look, seriously, for the love of God, don't send it via UPS. You're dealing with serious morons there."

"I'll make a note of that and see what we can do," the guy with Apple says.

So naturally they sent it using UPS again. I sighed. But then I got busy with work and the curling championships and thought no more about it. Except now it's November 18 and I'm thinking to myself "I still haven't seen that software yet" and check the UPS tracking number to see what's up.

They sent it to Inuvik...again.

Now I'm about ready to pop a gasket. Because while it's not a rush to get the software or anything, this is a level of incompetence above and beyond the call of duty. So I call Apple...again. And I explain to them what's going on.

"So Inuvik isn't near Iqaluit, right?" the Apple guy says.

"Inuvik is to Iqaluit as Vancouver is to Montreal, just add on about $3,000 extra air fare," I say.

"So they messed up big time?"

"Oh fuck yeah."

So Apple agrees to send out another copy of the software. They're even going to ship it priority. And I tell them, explicitly, for fuck's sake, for the love of God, do not send this via UPS. Do Not Do This.

"No problem," says the Apple guy.

Next day I get the email notice from Apple that the software has shipped. Via UPS.

If a definition of insanity is doing the exact same thing over and over and over again and expecting a different result, then Apple is nuttier than a fruitcake baking contest at the Waterford Hospital. I love the company, I love their products and I will recommend Apple computers to anyone looking for one.

But really, guys, seriously. This is about $600 in software Apple has wandering the lands looking for a home right now, thanks to UPS

So I'm watching it closely this time. And on the 19th of November, the software magically manages to make it to the east coast. Montreal, to be specific. So I'm thinking it should show up on the 20th, the 21st at the latest. Except I checked the UPS tracking number this morning.

It's delayed until December 2nd. No reason given. They're just not sending this priority package for another 10 days or so. Oh, and out of morbid curiosity, one of the other pieces of software is also, apparently, now in Montreal, with someone at UPS managing to fire up the ol' synapses enough to realize that Inuvik and Iqaluit and pretty different place. But I guess communities in the arctic that both start with the letter 'I' can be confusing to the brain damaged.

And I have a message on the answering machine from a UPS rep wondering if I've received the package of October 22nd. I could call them back but, and get this, the cheap bastards didn't give me a toll-free number to call. So I can find out where it is, once I call on my dime.

If they aren't the cheapest bunch of sons of bitches...

UPS's slogan, at some point, was "What can Brown do for you?"

Might I humbly make a suggestion?

Die, you useless, brain-dead, prehistoric bunch of motherfuckers. Please. Just go bankrupt and die and do the world a favour. Stand as an example of what happens to inefficient, useless and stupid companies that are incapable of performing their core functions with even a half-assed amount of efficiency.

Just die already.

Thank you.

Last Five
1. In the sky - Mark Knopfler
2. Annie's song - Me First and the Gimmie Gimmies
3. Thank you Louise - Ryan Adams
4. Waiting for a miracle - Bruce Cockburn
5. Good Ship Venus - Loudon Wainwright III (one of the filthiest songs ever recorded)*

10 comments:

Way Way Up said...

OMG...that is totally insane. I used to work for UPS (very very briefly) while in university so given what I've seen first-hand, I wouldn't be surprised if your parcel fell down off the conveyor belt between two large boxes in a corner and was totally forgotten about both in, and on its way to, Inuvik.

I actually used these idiots to ship a trumpet once from Ontario to Manitoba and it took about a mont to arrive. I was absolutely furious since I've had this trumpet since I was about 13 and I feared I would never ever see it again. Calling these idiots solved nothing since they kept telling me that according to their computer tracking system, it had already arrived.

So I totally join you hoping that this pathetic, inept, disorganized disease of a company goes bottom up and rots in hell, roasting over a blazing hot fire for all eternity.

WJM said...

I once "saved" money by buying a camera gadget from an eBay power-seller which was, despite the awful exchange rate at the time and POSTAGE charges, about $15 less than the price alone of the cheapest Canadian copy I could find.

But despite my insistence that they MAIL me the gadget, they UPSed it.

At the border, Canada Customs dinged me for $2.00 and change in GST.

UPS very helpfully brokered this for me for $25.

Plus GST on that brokerage service.


Oh - another wonderful verification "word": imydasi!

Ferry Tales said...

Not only have I seen the UPS guy's arsehole, but I've also seen the second one you just ripped him!
Seriously! What the bleep are they smoking at UPS?

Clare said...

Okay, I'm not getting this. Are you upset with them or something?

jen said...

Haha this is the EXACT problem we have been having with a computer docking station my husband ordered a month ago from Costco. It started out in Ontario (which should have been it's jumping point to the north but...), then it flew to Manitoba, then to Alberta (it's seen more of Western Canada then I have)...then nothing. When we called, UPS starting going on about Inuvik! How ridiculous! Why do they think Inuvik is some kind of Northern mail hub anyways? My husband explained and explained away and the UPS woman just kept saying everything going north has to go through Inuvik. Yeah to Inuvik, then back the way it came in the first place and then up through Ottawa or Montreal. Question is does UPS have a map? lol

Aida said...

yep, they are a bunch of morons. I am supposed to receive a replacement cup for the kids from California, been a month now. I called the rep of the company in California, they told me 10 days max it will get to me..ya right.

friend of mine ordered a remote (xmas present) for her husband. it was shipped by UPS. the husband answered the door and though it was stated "gift" on the box, the UPS guy came with an open box and said if it was just the remote they are expecting. stupidity? YES

Anonymous said...

Ahhh "hi"...hmmm...yeah..I just wanted to go ahead and say "thank you"..thank-you for all the copies of MS Word you've thoughtfully provided the community here.

I was just wondering, if possible, could you broaden your next purchase...say include a Powerbook (or two?) along with whatever you're sending yourself via UPS?

- your fellow citizens in any major Canadian city that starts with an "I" will be most grateful

Kate Nova said...

Ahahahahaha. I mean, sorry about the delay in getting the package, but that was hilarious.

N-i-N said...

Craig, I am NOW a fan of UPS, thanks to you... Damn, I love hearing the blood-vessel pop. How I miss that sound!

Tracey said...

I'm sorry to break the news to you, but unless Rogers breaks there contract with them, UPS won't be going out of business any time soon. Rogers thought they might not lose as many packages with them as they did with Purolator. Well...they were wrong.