Friday, June 22, 2012

A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the City

 I avoided a crash!

Of course, I ripped off the title for this blog post by changing only one word, but here's what I found amusing– As I made my way inbound on I90, traffic was heavy so I actually had a little time to digest the latest in billboard marketing. Between the Des Plaines Oasis and O'Hare, there are at least five billboards. Two of them showed women,  and one some skin.  One for a "gentleman's"  club, one for an exotica festival, and another for electronics recycling with a tag line something to the effect of " we think recycling is sexy". The other two billboards were for a casino and the Illinois Lottery. So, what does that  say about us as a society? Probably that we haven't come very far when we need to resort to showing women in seductive poses to sell products or services. Or– that every driver is male and all he wants to do is have sex and gamble. You decide. Either way, it's kinda sad that these vices vie for our attention along with the texting epidemic that seems to have afflicted the nation's drivers. In a world full of distractions, let's get back to focusing on what's in front of us. Namely, the road. C'mon people, we  can do better. 

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Kenmore - No More: So long Sears

It's no secret that I like male genitalia nothing that is sold in the US is made in the US, and we're constantly being implored to be patriotic and buy American. So why am I bitching? Because when I try to buy American, I get screwed.  Sears is a perfect example. Once a brand that was the undeniable flagship of American manufacturing, Sears too has fallen on hard times. Its stores are closing left and right, and its attempt to become a major player in the online retail world doesn't seem to be working. But before we go there, I'd like to tell you all why I personally will no longer shop at Sears.  A couple years ago, I purchased  all new appliances for my kitchen. I bought all Kenmore, with the exception of the dishwasher,  a Bosch which the salesmen recommended. Recently, the $900 refrigerator stopped working, so I called the Sears service hotline. The next day, they sent out a tech who told me that the compressor was bad and that it would cost $1,200 to fix it. Naturally, I declined, because as is the case with most everything these days, it's cheaper to buy a new one rather than to fix the old one.  I chatted with the repair tech about my refrigerator and found out that although it said Kenmore on the front, it was an LG product (an Asian company) that was assembled in Mexico.  RU kidding me? Sears? Made in Mexico? Via Korea or wherever, it just proves that American companies are just as deceitful as any other when it comes to full disclosure.  Perhaps, it was my fault for not asking the salesmen where it was manufactured, but Sears had always been my "go to" brand for appliances because of its reputation for quality and reliability. I just assumed that anything Sears would be made in the USA, apparently I was wrong. So much for brand loyalty. Sears, you will never get me back as a customer because of your crummy warranty and your lousy product. I'd tell you where to stick your Craftsmen wrench, but by now I'm pretty sure you know where that would be.  So long, Sears.