Life call is a national service for which we pay monthly. It is a box connected to our landline. The Nonagenarian wears a bracelet with a radio transmitter. When she pushes the button on the bracelet the box automatically dials the monitoring centre. The service is the buffer between the guilt I feel leaving her alone all day, and my work obligations.
Most of the time the box sits quietly. Evey now and then it makes noises…noises you cannot ignore. But like a crying baby the box is unable to tell you what is wrong. I have to call the monitoring centre and hope that in faraway Edmonton, there will be someone on the other end that understands the depth of terror engendered when the machine is out of order. How will I care for the Nonagenarian from my desk 30 km away?
Today, being Saturday, when the box began to emit a trio of beeps every 30 seconds, I damped down the panic and called the help desk. The battery needs replacing. I was given 3 options: we mail a replacement to you, you bring it in to one of our offices’ , or you take the box apart retrieve the battery and go to a battery store and buy a replacement. “You just have to remove 4 screws on the back of the box near the speaker.”
I chose door number three. Eight screws, two covers and an inoperable landline later, I was mailing photos of the pieces to my brother 1000 km away. “What does the battery look like?”
When at last, as instructed, I followed the red and black wires to their source I found something I had never seen on the shelf of a battery store. My brother suggested I call back Lifecall , and ask where to find such a battery.
“Oh, we send you a replacement. That is the only way to acquire it.”
We are without the service for 4 days. I still have a dismantled alarm, 8 screws and the battery from hades on the dining room table. What do people do who don’t have someone to take up the slack for them? That’s my future. It terrifies me.
Raise the Roof is a public service campaign, designed to increase the sale of toques. By putting a new hat on your head, you are contributing to a fund that puts a new roof over the heads of those who need it most. Good cause. Pretty good hat.
The spot playing on television uses a quirky sense of humour to capture a potential purchaser’s attention. A youngster with a cold sore on her mouth and eating a tuna sandwich and wearing a toque is in a laundromat. The woman she is with is doing laundry and sipping from a water container. The woman shares the water bottle with the youngster who takes a sip, putting cold sore and stinky washback on the bottle’s neck.
Only last night I noticed a disclaimer t in the bottom right hand corner that stated – we should not share water bottles with people with cold sores. That was the straw that drove this camel back to WordPress. What has happened to the intelligence of our species that we need to tell people not to do stupid things when we make advertisements that are over the top?
Have you seen the Nissan ad, with Bobby Downey Jr. narrating? The one with the truck that snowboards down a mountainside. That was a creative way to demonstrate that the truck is rugged and fun. That ad has a disclaimer that states clearly that the truck cannot be used as a snowboard. Implied is the word stupid, or at least I finish the disclaimer every time I read it with stupid.
If the lawyers think that disclaimers are necessary that means that someone somewhere stupidly attempted the action they saw depicted. I guess we can’t blame the lawyers. I think, however, that the gene pool needs a thorough cleaning. Pool boy!
To give pleasure to a single heart by a single act is better than a thousand heads bowing in prayer.
My heart was overwhelmed today by a bouquet of single acts bestowed on me by considerate folk. Each act distinct from the other – gestures, words, emails, hugs, phone calls, hand shakes – wrapped in kindness.
Any one of the flowers in that bouquet would have been memorable, deeply appreciated, and cherished as long as I breathe.
The abundance humbles me. Your expectations challenge me. Your faith inspires me.
Solving problems or identifying business strategies using a strictly scientific approach is risky. Clinical, data driven decision-making is possible only with accurate, reliable data. Therein lies the rub.
Business data are often flawed. An ‘academic’ scientific approach requires a control group, and acknowledges the validity of concluding that a hypothesis incorrect. What profit-generating business can afford an investment of resources in an approach that recognizes failure as a viable an option?
My point does not refer to development and research for potential products with physical properties – dimensions, weight, stress, chemical compounds, strength. Most manufacturing businesses have scientific systems and standards in place that acknowledge the possibility of failure.
Should a scientific approach be used by businesses that sell the ephemeral: the Arts, education, charities, or destination management organizations for example? Or should the scientific approach be tempered by an understanding of human behavior as well as subjective qualities such as hope and desire? Should there be room for the gut feel?
I have had a response from Elections Canada to my rant:
Thank you for taking the time to write to us. We take note of your concerns. The dates for advance polls are not discretionary but are instead set by legislation, based on polling day. Subsection 171(2) of the Canada Elections Act provides that an advance polls shall only by open on Friday, Saturday and Monday, the 10th, 9th and 7th days, respectively, before polling day. Since polling day is May 2nd, advance polls were therefore required under the Act to be scheduled for April 22, April 24 and April 25, 2011. Please note that Elections Canada does not set polling day. Pursuant to Section 57 of the Canada Elections Act, polling day is set by a proclamation issued by the Governor in Council (the Governor General), unless it is a fixed election date. Electors have other options which we hope will accommodate their circumstances. They are invited to contact their local Returning Officer (RO) office who can provide electors with information on what their options might be (if they live close by, they could vote in person at the RO office, if they don’t they can also vote by mail), and the staff in the RO office can explain these options and how an elector goes about exercising each one. For the contact information for your local RO office, check our website at the following link and enter your postal code: http://www.elections.ca/scripts/pss/finded.aspx?L=e You can also call 1-800-463-6868 and they will put you through to the local RO office. We regret that we cannot give you a more favourable response.