Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Wednesday Hodgepodge

1. What summer activity most takes you back to your own childhood?
Swimming. We always had a pool growing up at my parents house. I haven't been swimming since I moved out, but I do miss it.

2. What's your favorite summer smell?
Chlorine. Nothing like the smell of a clean pool to make me think of summer! Worst summer smell would be lake or river water. I HATE swimming somewhere where creatures live and I can't see my feet (although the ocean is the exception...LOVE the smell of the salt water).

3. It's beach season in the US of how do you feel about sand?
Love it in theory, but I absolutely cannot STAND the feeling of it swishing between my toes, getting in my shoes, etc. Gives me the utter willies!

4. Sun tea, SunChips, sunflower seeds, Capri Sun, Sunny Delight, Sun-Maid raisins, sun-dried tomatoes...your favorite food or beverage with sun in its name?
Probably Sun Tea, although I haven't had it since I was a kid.

5. What's your favorite way to cool off on a hot summer day?
I don't get hot and I prefer the heat, it's just the sun in my eyes I don't like. I used to be a solar baby, now I rarely ever get out. I miss that sometimes.

6. Share a favorite song with the word sun or sunshine in it's title.
Reach Up (for the Sunrise) - Duran Duran (of course!) and one of their best live songs!

7. Tell us about a time you had an exceedingly good or truly awful customer service experience. If it was awful, did you report it? Ever go back there again?
Best and worst have always been Disney World (and of course I would go back again). Depending on the situation, you always have the power to turn it around. For example, get a grumpy Cast Member? Make a point to ask how their day is going or to be extra nice when they are not. Southern charm goes a long way! Worse comes to worse, I like to say, "sorry you're having a bad day" and that usually stops them in their tracks and they start to do a 360.

But there have been occasions where nothing could be done. In 1999, when I was at my social phobia worst, I forgot to get my hand stamped coming out of Epcot (the way they used to handle park hopping) and, when I tried to get into Magic Kingdom, the old man at the gate threw a fit and was actually yelling at me! I started crying and having a panic attack (because that's what socially inept people do), but the dude kept yelling at me until finally, a very young CM came over, told him to get over it, apologized profusely, and let me through. I could still hear that grumpy old fart complaining at the kid about "stupid guests not following the rules" all the way inside. Took me HOURS to calm down enough. I've never forgotten either of them.

Then, there was the time on Spaceship Earth in 2006 when a very grumpy CM was waving me forward to step on the moving platform (and I HATE those things...terrified I'm going to fall). There was no one in front of me and no one behind me (one of those rare occasions when you get to ride all on your own). I started to step on the bloody thing (as she was instructing me) and she starts stampeding at me (for lack of a better term, but that's pretty much what it was like), waving her arms, and yelling at me to get back and was I stupid and couldn't I understand English. I kid you not. I was miserable that entire ride and certainly didn't enjoy it. That was the only time I ever went to guest services and complained about a Cast Member and I did so the second I walked off that ride.

There used to be a particularly rude jerk that worked at the hat embroidery stand in the back of the Disney Days of Christmas store. He was rude, hateful, and constantly complained about his job. My sister complained about him two years in a row. We haven't seen him since.

I have never encountered a nice CM in either Morocco or Mexico in Epcot (and Morocco is my favorite Pavilion). Not sure why that is. The UK, Canada, Japan, and China have the nicest (with Canada being above and beyond nice). Norway, France, Germany, Italy, and the American Adventure are hit and miss sometimes. Considering that those CM's are from those host countries, I don't know if it's a cultural thing (considering I've never been to any of those but Canada and Mexico). I just know to not ask questions or interact with anyone in either Morocco or Mexico (and it's kept me from buying stuff in either country because I didn't want to interact with them since I didn't want to have a bad reaction).

But for every one bad CM, I can count literally dozens of good ones. Most of them work there because they enjoy it, but there is the odd one that is there just to have a job and could care less. Considering Disney's rigorous training program, I'm not sure how those people sneak through. Granted, Disney pays squat, but that usually means you'd have to love it to work there because you aren't gonna survive on that kind of salary (although, given the chance, I'd like to try - behind the scenes, of course, I wouldn't be good in customer service either) or you are desperate for a job. In either case, you'd still have to have a certain "Disney-esque" personality to survive.

8. Insert your own random thought here.
I skipped last week's Hodgepodge due to the overabundance of Father's Day questions (considering my Father's Day rant, I didn't feel it would be appropriate)...sorry guys!

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