Tuesday, 28 February 2017

A Luddite's Lament

A Luddite?  Me?  Just because my mobile phone was bought umpteen years ago and has long been a museum item, that doesn't make me a Luddite.  No way!  I remember the old days when washing went into the boiler in the steamy kitchen and had to be swished around with a wooden stick, then rinsed and wrung out by hand before being squeezed through the mangle and hung on the line - which had to be hoisted by means of a rope through a pulley. No, I'm a great fan of washing machines and tumble driers, so I'm no Luddite.

Today - just in case you've forgotten - is pancake day. Mardi Gras. It also happens to be the day of the week when I do a little light shopping at our local supermercado.  On the shopping list - it being pancake day - was a bottle of lemon juice. (There is a part-used bottle in the fridge, but the Old Bat likes to be sure.)  And guess what?  The one thing they had sold out of was bottles of lemon juice!  So much for computerised stock maintenance!

I really shouldn't have been surprised as I have had previous experience of this sort of thing.  It was back in late November or early December in 2015 that the Old Bat wanted some ground almonds, an essential ingredient when icing the Christmas cake.  There was none on the shelf, so I asked a shelf-stacker just down the aisle. "Oh," he said, "we seem to have had a run on that the last couple of days."

Then there was the time my Lions Club wanted to buy things for a local food bank.  I prepared a list of what we wanted and went to the customer service desk, partly in the hope of being offered a discount but mainly because I wanted to be sure that there was sufficient stock on collection day.  The duty manager was called and I was told they couldn't help me.  The local staff had no way of overriding the computer to ensure the stock would be delivered!

(Another store - a different company - gladly ordered what we wanted and left it packed on trolleys in the delivery area for us to collect.  And I got the loyalty points on a thousand pounds of goods!)

No, I'm not a Luddite - but i do wish that companies would make sure their computer programs actually do what is wanted!

1 comment:

joeh said...

I learned many years ago, not to look to buy buttermilk the day before St. Patrick's day...no soda bread that year.