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I live in the US. I speak English. I don’t speak any other languages, nor am I fluent in reading any others. (I know, major fail on my part)

When I email for help; when I call with questions- the LEAST you, as a company, can do is to provide me with someone who actually speaks my language and whom I can actually understand. It’s just good business practice.

Seems I’m having issues with a Kindle download. I was supposed to get a collection of books- 3, to be precise- and while the front of the book shows the correct information, the book ended at the end of book 1. I’m going the route of trying to figure out where the problem is- is it with the file? Is it with my device?

Dunno. So, I emailed Amazon and the other places.

I kid you not when I say I couldn’t even understand the REPLY sent to me. Sorry.  Raheed, your English is not sufficient for me to understand what the heck you are trying to say. I get that you want me to give you a call. A call for what?  To waste an hour of my life being put on hold and then to find I’m talking to someone I can’t even understand? No thanks. I am annoyed enough that I am going to complain to Amazon. Maybe it will make me feel better.

Used to be, folks who came to the USA legally were proud that they were here. They learned English. They learned US history. They remained proud of their ethnic heritage, and had neighborhoods where the native language was still prevalent, along with the foods and customs.

Now you don’t even have to be in the country legally to get a driver’s license. Nope. While Washington recently (as I understand it) revoked its law, New Mexico will give you a driver’s licence, even if you are an illegal alien. (No, these folks are not immigrants- immigrants are here legally. These people are illegal aliens.) 

Think that doesn’t cause problems? Think again. Some folks from China figured it out. Fortunately, they got caught.  More here. Still, how many licenses are out there fraudulently? No idea. Doubt we’ll ever know.

Talk to the immigrants who are here legally and they are furious. They jumped through the hoops. They were proud to learn the language. They were proud to be able to use the system. They feel as though they’ve been slapped in the face by those here illegally who are given the same “rights” as they are (and yes, we personally know many families in this category).

Heritage and customs are wonderful things. Particularly if they become festivals. It lets those of us unfamiliar with the culture get a taste of it. We’re part of the wide, wide world, and it’s great to have the opportunity to experience something that is half-way around the world.

But you know what? That’s where it ends for me. I don’t like feeling like a foreigner in my own country. Whatever happened to actual customer service? It’s bad enough you make me listen to 10 minutes of options with a non-live person before I can even learn what number I need to press. Sure, it’s easier for you. It’s just frustrating to me. And, it doesn’t leave me feeling like a loyal customer.

Whatever happened to the customer is always right? Now, it’s all about the bottom line and corporate profit. Us peons are just a means to an end- we’re just the stuff that has to be put up with so the company can make its mega bucks.

And this has nothing to do with the occupy fiasco. (People- go to work! You can’t find work if you aren’t looking. Quit blocking roadways that affect the travel on 6 lane highways where speeds are over 65 mph- you’re a hazard to the folks going places! We get your point.  S*itting in public parks isn’t going to endear you the corporate or the rest of the world.  Women only tents are what we are going to remember about this stuff, in addition to the mess- including human excrement- left behind.)

The larger issue, in my opinion, is a reflection of the state of society at large. Everyone is more worried about what they can get than what they can give. We want what we want, and we want it now. People don’t want to work hard. They’ve been conditioned that way. Much of the time, a person can work hard; put in a great effort, get great results, and still end up feeling punished for their hard work.

When your reward is tied to others that don’t have the same work ethic and you suffer the consequences of their failures- doesn’t make you inclined to work as hard as you have been. When there are a few in the same position and only one of you actually doing the job yet everyone gets paid the same- sure makes the one working his/her butt off think twice about putting forth the same effort, because there is no payback. No longer does effort = reward.

And let’s be honest- people don’t work because they get warm fuzzies. They don’t work and put up with idiocy because they want self- fulfillment. People work because of money. Money puts food on the table and clothes on your back.

This whole things sets up frustration on many levels. People don’t work hard for the sake of taking pride in their work. Neither do companies have real concern or care for customers if it affects their bottom line.

I may have to call Amazon. I’ve done it before, and I’ll do it again- I have asked to speak to a native English speaker. More times than I can count, I have said to the person on the other end of the phone, “I cannot understand you.  Please transfer me to someone who is fluent in English.” Problem is- they usually don’t understand that and it takes me getting mad and saying “I want to speak to your supervisor” before I get someone I can understand.

I’m not being racist. I’m being realistic. If I went to Germany to live, I would darn well be able to speak German enough to be comfortable. If I went to China to live- I’d learn Chinese. WHY do people think they can infiltrate a country and expect the country to cater to them?

If you live in southern California, you probably don’t think twice when all the stickers on store merchandise are in Spanish and in English. And I’ve seen this where I live- store signs in Spanish. I once saw a price tag in Arabic and English.  Can’t remember where, but there you have it.

If you move somewhere- learn the national language. If you have a customer service department that is global- match the help with those needing help. And when someone calls in the USA, please give them someone who is fluent in English. You know, for us schmucks living in the USA who speak English.

Thanks. 

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Yes, it’s a full-fledged dilemma.  Oh the drama!!  Which knitting needles to buy?  😆

I was cruising along doing fine yesterday; I got the blanket put together and finished, so it was on to the hat.  You may recall that the first hat I made for the new niece turned out to be huge, even though initially it was to gauge (I think it’s because my yarn was not baby sport weight, which I can’t actually find here).  Anyhow, new pattern for chunky yarn using circular needles, and off I went.

I did one round and ripped it out.  Why?  My cable was too long. I’m not smart enough yet to convert a circular pattern to a straight pattern, so this led me to the logical realization that perhaps it’s time to invest in an interchangeable circular needle kit. 

My concern, after researching, is that once I get the kit, the cables will still be too long to do small hats.  Since I don’t know if I can find a smaller interchangeable cable for the kit I’m thinking about getting, I think I’m going to have to measure the cable on my fixed circular and make sure that if I need to get a different size that’s not included in the kit, that I order it at the same time if I can.

I’ve spent a good many hours this morning searching for interchangeable needle kits.  I saw one kit at Hobby Lobby, which was priced around $75, if I recall.  I wanted to see if I could do better online, and have managed to find the same kit more reasonably priced.  I have read the reviews and that’s a mixed bag – some love the needles; others hate them.  I figure at this point, I am not too terribly picky so it might be worth the investment.  It might not be, but at least I’ll learn whether or not an interchangeable system is up my alley or not.

But oooooooo, I did find one set of dpns (double pointed needles) that I think I’ll love from Knit Picks in the Harmony Wood.  My next dilemma is which length to get?  I measured my dpns, and they are all the longer ones, coming in around 7 inches from tip to tip.  When I’m making socks, I’m finding they are full, probably because I’m only using 4.  Since these come in sets of 6, I could use them for 4 or 5 needle patterns, which is great!  Does that mean that there are fewer stitches on each needle, thus meaning I could get away with a shorter needle (and get a lower price on the set)?  That’s my next thing to reasearch, it seems.  😆

I guess the next step is to compare prices for the kit I’ve settled on; the Boye Needlemaster 200.  So far, I’ve narrowed it down to Amazon or Overstock.com, but my searching has just begun.  Now that I know what I’m looking for, the chase is on for something that won’t cost an arm and a leg!

If you are experienced with these kinds of items, I would love to have your input!

Update: I found and bought this set new on eBay, and saved about $60 compared to buying it locally.  Even at the least expensive place online, I still saved $24 by using eBay.  

*Disclaimer: I have no financial interest or stake in eBay except I generally check there to get great deals! (DH is chuckling, because he has the account and his history shows totally girly things, like dishes,  too.  😆 )

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books books books book books books books books books book books books books books books book books books books books books books book books books books books book books books  BOOKS BOOKS BOOKS BOOKS BOOKS BOOKS BOOKS BOOKS BOOKS BOOKS BOOKS BOOKS BOOKS BOOKS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

You get the point.  I’m drunk on books!  😆   A few days ago, I got my next book to review.  That’s not what set me off.  What got me going was a shared link to Ereader News Today.  This is a website that, when you sign up for free, will send you notification of new, free Kindle books.  I immediately went into overload.     

I was thrilled when I was researching e-readers and discovered that Kindle offers free books.  There are a few different ways I’ve found to find the freebies.  First, I went to the regular Kindle e-book page on Amazon.  If you scroll down the page, you’ll a listing on the right hand side for best sellers, including free books.  That’s one way to find free Kindle ebooks.

Another way is to click on a category and then filter by price, low to high.  While sometimes not in complete order, it’s usually pretty good. Once you click on a book, you’ll get a scrolling bar of books that folks who have bought the book you are viewing also purchased.  Kind of nice!

On the left navigation bar, Amazon has a “Free eBook Collection” link.  There are tons of classic novels in there; lots of historical books (one I read recently was compiled from letters of early American settlers I found particularly gripping)  and links to e-collections on the web.  This is a fabulous resource!

I also found a Listmania for free ebooks.  I can’t remember how I came across this, but I saved it, and it’s a good thing I did.  The one I use the most is titled “Kindle Freebies. Get Them While The Getting’s Good.”  On this page, there are other Listmanias listed, which is helpful for searching for books grouped together in different ways (not just freebies).

And then tonight, as I was working on winding down to go and sit and knit a bit, I popped into Facebook and there it was.  A shared post from a friend that linked to ENT and I was hooked.  First I went and signed up, and then went to the FB page and clicked on every link there.  While I was madly clicking, I had another browser open and was searching my other places for more freebies.  I spent over two hours downloading 57 free selections (some of them are short stories).

One title made me giggle, Tick Tock (James Patterson, preview).  Since it was only the first 28 chapters, I passed.  I got more of the classics (Charlotte Bronte, Jane Austen and OOOOO now I see The Works of Edgar Allan Poe, Volume I so I’ll have to make a point to go back and get it.)    Others I downloaded are these:

Joel Kilpatrick (Author), David Levy (Author)
 
Elinore Pruitt Stewart (Author)
 
While I did refrain from getting “Common Sense,” I could not prevent myself from downloading  The American Frugal Housewife by Lydia Maria Francis Child after reading the review.  Who wouldn’t want to learn to make old-fashioned in a kettle in your backyard or make furniture polish from a little white vinegar and olive oil?  It sounds like she was the original Heloise
  
Apparently, the author was born in 1802 and between the years of 1835 and 1841, it was republished 27 times!  I’ve been reading some reviews (go ahead, Google it! :lol:) and I am loving them!  What a gem it looks to be- there’s even a diagram somewhere of the (meat) parts of an ox, which I shall have to research and see if they translate to beef.  Although I’ll bet there are some “opinions” I’m bound to disagree with.  😉
 
 Whew! Ok, I think I am calming down.  This book stuff-  intoxicating! 

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