Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Personal Musings - IV

Dellirious with Joy

Following up yesterday’s tale of woe with Dell, Inc., I am happy to report that I seem to have some satisfaction of my claim.

I got a return voice mail from the company’s p.r. guy offering to have me call him back for advice on how to solve the problem. But before I got the message, a customer service supervisor, one of about a dozen Dell employees I have talked to since Monday, connected me to a department I didn’t know existed – the Cancellations Department.

There, somewhere in Central America, Carlos (Badge 122203) kept me on hold on two occasions for several minutes each time, but he was able to cancel my order, which any number of other Dell employees and an e-mail response from the company told me was impossible. Even if I get delivery, I am to return it, prepaid, for a full refund.

I recommend that folks with a consumer complaint that is handled satisfactorily by phone ask for the customer service rep’s supervisor to tell him or her about the good job. They hear the bad stuff all day.

Thanks, Carlos.

Now, if anyone has advice on how I should obtain a high-speed, high memory laptop that will sit on a docking station, feel free to offer it here or privately.

Putting a Band-Aid on Cancer

I spent the day doing exactly that – trying to keep a several Band-Aids in place between the edge of my chin and my lower lip. Pretty difficult, given the musculature necessary to eat or talk.

The reason for putting a Band-Aid on cancer, which is equivalent in the argot of clichedom to rearranging deck chairs on the Titanic, was that, well, I had cancer.

Not surprisingly, given family history, fair complexion and childhood sunburns, I was diagnosed with a basal cell carcinoma. That’s cancer. But it doesn’t usually kill anyone unless it goes untreated for a really long time; and it is not the kind of cancer that spreads beyond its original boundary.

So I had it removed yesterday, which involved excruciating pain from the anesthetic injection (the face having nerves closer to the skin than anywhere else, I am told) and involved an ugly, literally defacing, wound. The Band-Aid just holds the Neosporin to the wound and is recommended really only to hide the disfigurement, which should recede into a very light manly scar after a few scabby weeks.

My point is not to recommend readers to rush to their dermatologists. But if you have a family history of skin growths, fair skin or early exposure to sun, pay attention. I made a routine check-up appointment to have him look at some unsightly growths. He looked around my arms, neck and back and said “those are no problem. But this one is.” (If you are lucky enough to have someone authorized to do so, have him or her check your back for changes in moles or growths. You don't exactly notice them yourself.)

It was a minuscule discoloration that I barely had noticed even though I shaved over it every day, but the doc recognized it right away. But being a doctor, he had an assistant call me a week after the exam to say the biopsy revealed it was cancerous and I should make an appointment to have it removed. But not for three weeks until the doc got back from vacation.

It Could Have Been a Chevy Plant

I just hate bad punctuation. Give this sign some commas, for Christs sake!

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