Tuesday, November 30, 2004

Customer Service

Well, this has been a month of non-stop traveling. I have experienced customer service both at its best and at its worst. I managed to loose my cell phone at the beginning of a trip which of course is my primary means of communication and absolutely terrible. However, the wonderful woman who works at O'Hare's American Airline's baggage claim was able to track me down and return it to me saving me the hassle of finding out everyone's phone number and paying a wonderful $50 deductible to have my phone replaced. Then, that same weekend, I had terrible service by United, but no real need to discuss that. They just will never get my money again if I can help it. Then, in our hotel in Newark, a worker walked into the room while my mom was there without even knocking to bring a message. Why wouldn't they just hold the message at the desk and call the room to let us know they had something for us? I have definitely never heard of such a situation.

But so when I complain in general about customer service, people like to use an excuse, "well customer service just isn't what it used to be." Well to me that isn't an excuse. People may not care about how they are serving others, but in an economy so based off of service, shouldn't it be more of a priority. Even if your taking a selfish stance, it is to your benefit to treat customers well to ensure repeat business. There are few places that are so good that no matter the service, clients will return. Well since we have officially entered the holiday season and are supposed to embrace the spirit of giving, hope, and joy, perhaps I will enjoy some good customer service for the next month. But then again, it is the busiest shopping time of the year, so perhaps people won't care about being friendly.

Tuesday, November 09, 2004

A Bit Encouraged

So Saturday started off a bit difficultly with my Dismantling Racism Committee meeting. There seems to be a misconception in the diocese that racism isn't an important issue. Don't get me wrong, I realize that there are many other important issues and that the diocese isn't the only one that has managed to put racism on the back burner. However, it also frustrating for all on the commission when we have the feeling of being shrugged off and used so that it can be said that someone is working on the issue. The problem comes in when support both financially and in actually showing is up has been dwindling. Although we laughed a bit at the meeting, I think many of us still walked out of there frustrated.

However, a series of events occurred on Sunday that gave me a bit of encouragement. First, there was a baptism at the morning service which always brings joy and hope for a wonderful life as someone officially becomes a member of the church. After that, I went with Lindsay to Rockwell House where some finishing touches were being done on the basement before Mike returned. I am impressed by all of the hard work that went into it and that it was simply the initiative of community members rather than Mike saying it needed to be done. I contributed what I could with my handprint and the pillow and of course offered to run the pillows through my sewing machine later when there was more time.

Then, I was able to finish Christmas shopping for my mother, which I find to be one of the hardest tasks of the year. I know this seems to be totally off topic, but nothings makes me feel better than finding something I am sure that my mother will enjoy because everything she does is for me or her kids at school. It is always to do something nice for an extraordinarily good person. My day concluded at the $2 potluck at my church. This meeting was so energizing. It was almost awe inspiring to hear the ideas an thoughts that everyone brought to the table. It is also amazing to see some of the places that they are lacking. Who would have thought that the idea for a divorced person's support group would come out of a social justice meeting. But what better place to provide support and continued acceptance after such an ordeal for a Christian than through the church? Also, we talked about the idea that its okay to be against the homosexual marriage laws, the war in Iraq, and the actions of our current president and still be a good Christian.

So after a day of frustration and wondering how I could possibly make in the difference in the world with many obstacles, Sunday most certainly provided a bit of encouragement. I can go back to being though of as a dreamer like my wonderful mother once again. The way I look at it, God answered one of my prayers in an unexpected way...........Although the commission may still face difficulties, I still have found an outlet to work for the good of the community and the good of all people.

Sunday, November 07, 2004

The Beginning

While it is true that I don't quite understand blogging, I have decided to embrace it as an outlet for my hopes, dreams, and frustrations. I thought this might be better than writing in a journal because typing seems much more natural than writing. So now to get started............... Since election day, along with many liberals, I have been expressing great fear and looking for hope in the years to come. I am not so much concerned that I don't like our president, because that could happen whether the president was liberal or conservative. I am more concerned with the unfortunate truth that one party has a power in all of Washington. I don't believe that this is good whether it were Democrats or Republicans in power. More distressing for me is the future of the Supreme Court. I can only hope that a conservative justice will retire and be replaced by another. I would just like somewhat of a balance to be kept.

Furthermore, I am disheartened by this country's overwhelming belief that Christian values should influence the governing of this country and that so much of the country believes that the sanctity of marriage is threatened by homosexuals. If you ask me, we should just completely get rid of marriage from the state. Marriage is something that should be recognized by one's religion. I think that if a couple, and that is any couple, whether it be a man and a woman, two women, or two men, or any other possibility, desires to be recognized by the state and the country, then they should get a civil union. Laws should not be attempting to protect the sanctity of marriage. That is a struggle for religious institutions. And even if marriage remains, how does the marriage of a homosexual couple damage the sanctity of marriage when the current divorce rate is 50% and marriages occur that are purely for citizenship or as a joke.

Well I guess that I have to accept that we have another 4 years of President Bush, but I hope that our new Illinois Senator can protect some liberal views. Perhaps as Senator Obama has said on recent interviews, he will be able to help find some common ground for this country to move forward on. I of course realize that Obama can't do this on his own, it has to be a team effort. But I do still have a glimmer of hope with him being in Washington.

Recently things seem to be discouraging in this country as far as social justice goes. Perhaps things will begin to look up this afternoon. I am going to a $2 potluck at my church to discuss where we are headed this year. Not all Christians are members of the Christian Rite, and really do believe in equality for all.

Well that's all for now.......more when I feel the need for an outlet again. This will likely be soon the way things have been going.