Thursday, May 23, 2013

Sigh... More Of The Same...

Okay... got the new base in for the fixture in yesterday. Put the fixture together, but do nothing else with it for the evening. Get here today and put brackets, shelves, and product on the fixture. Things are okay. Three hours later, the fixture is doing the "Leaning Tower of Pisa". It seems that two of the casters gave out under the strain and decided to pull away from the particle board base upon which they mounted.

Took product off of the shelf, removed the two good casters, put the fixture back together sans wheels, put product back on the shelf, and called Store Supply Warehouse. Talked to them and they will ship out another base tomorrow. It will get here Tuesday due to the holiday.

When we put the fixture together, HiSign noted that the second based seemed different than the first. We just sort of shrugged and soldiered on. Wish we had listened to that hunch.

From a life standpoint, things continue apace. I really wish I wasn't as busy at the store as I have been as there are a number of things that sort of require my attention. I'll get through it, though. Always have... always do... always will...

-- GopherDave

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Angry Gopher Is Angry...

Wow... To say I've had a bad twenty hours or so would be a huge understatement. I'm not going much into it other than that.

I will say that Store Supply Warehouse is both maddening and a champion with their customer service. Earlier today, due to some shenanigans with them, I was seriously considering arson, but they came through in the end. Basically, we had ordered some fixtures for the store just prior to the weekend. They showed up on Monday, a day earlier than expected. On Tuesday, HiSign broke the cases open to find the both of the bases for said fixtures were damaged enough that they could not be used. Called up SSW, they said "no problem", and shipped two more bases to arrive today. This morning, only one base showed up. In a rather hostile mood, I called them back to see what the deal was. The sales rep spoke to me, then to her manager, then came back to me and said "No worries. We'll ship out another base and it will be there later today around 5 or 5:30PM."

I was not surprised by the today part, because I was irate and rather insistent that be the case. I put the phone down, satisfied that things would be taken care of. Less than thirty minutes later, I get a call from SSW saying they found the missing base (U.P.S. damaged it before it even got on their delivery truck, so *THEY* had sent it back) and that my new one would be here tomorrow.

My face scrunched up a bit as I questioned this whole "tomorrow" thing after a representative of their company said a new fixture base would be here later today. The voice at the other end tried to tell me that would be impossible. Really? SSW is in St. Louis. We are in East Central Illinois. It is a four-hour drive. We are open until 11PM. It was Noon. From my perspective, they had an eleven hour window. That didn't seem impossible to me. Said representative insisted it couldn't be done. I disagreed. Vehemently. Asked to be kicked further up the chain. That person said it couldn't happen. I asked for the next level of employee. Got to the shipping manager. He also said that no one they deal with in terms of courier could make this happen. Once again, asked for the next level of management up. A few moments later, the shipping manager comes back on the line saying his boss is busy. My response... "I don't care if you have to send two guys with a U-Haul to bring me what we ordered. Your company said it would be here today. I'm holding you to that statement. (brief pause) Tell you what, put the owner of the company on the phone. I'll explain what has happened thus far and then you can explain to him why he is dealing with an upset customer."


"Let me speak to my traffic manager about this. Maybe we can get someone we don't normally use. I will call you back within the hour."

It was 12:20PM at this point. About fifteen minutes later, I get a call back saying that while my part may not make it by 5:30PM, it would indeed be here today.

The courier rolled up at 4:50PM with an undamaged part.

See? Not impossible.

So, in short, will we use Store Supply Warehouse in the future? Probably. They won't be my first choice, as it took them five bases to get two undamaged ones here in a reasonable time frame, but they ultimately pulled their reputation out of the fire today after having stuck it in the inferno themselves. The fixtures that we got? They look good. When they are all assembled and product is on them, we'll take pictures.

Onward, angrily...

-- GopherDave

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Not Quite How I Expected...

Another day, another... well, day...

Without much prompting, I believe I have four players already for my upcoming Champions campaign. It'll be an interesting group, though I will have to be careful about a couple of things. Most of my attention will be concerned with being vigilant of not letting the group stray too far from the "comic book ideal" I am striving for.

In general, I am looking for a mix of slam-bang action and thought-provoking, personal stories. I envision it as people reading a comic book about "X" group, where they follow the group member's stories, trials, and tribulations. Once I get things set up with the group, and get things started, I hope to have time to write "excerpts" from the story. These excerpts will be put together in such a way that the players can read about something happening in another part of the world (like they were readers of the "comic book") that may (or may not) affect their characters. In a sense, I am hoping to give the players another window into the world we'll be building together. We'll see how that goes.

Just for kicks and grins, I twiddled around with a couple of villains that could possibly be for the game. No one really important, these guys fall into the "I'ma rob a bank"-category of supergoon. Every comic needs no-goodniks like these to give heroes some easy victories and early confidence. That is my aim with these morons. Once play gets started and some of the characters begin to establish themselves, *THAT* is when the memorable bad guys will come out to play.


-- GopherDave