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Well, that was pleasant

Summer arrived suddenly Wednesday afternoon, and with it a burst of energy and mood uplift. Yesterday I spent very little time at the computer and lots working in the sun.

I prepped for next week’s house projects and completed earlier ones. I cleaned windows, put up screens, and let air into the house. I raked and swept and scoped out the work ahead.

Then in the afternoon I stretched out on the lawn swing with a glass of iced tea and enjoyed the kind of relaxation you can really enjoy because you’ve earned it.


Sometime during all this, FedEx arrived. The delivery driver was more interesting than the delivery. He had only one arm. His left arm was completely gone at the shoulder, so he didn’t even have a stump to use for leverage.

He was a nice guy. Very friendly. And my package was an easy one-hander. I wondered how he handles bigger, heavier shipments and whether hiring a one-armed delivery guy might be taking “reasonable accommodation” to its pretty far limits.

But more power to him if he can do the job.


Sigh. Speaking of delivery people … we are back to those who truly can’t do the job.

Last night at 7:00, a call comes from an unfamiliar number, which I don’t answer. I never answer calls from unknown numbers.

Then there’s a voice mail. Four days after I canceled the order and nearly three weeks after its final “expect by” date I’m told my construction scaffolding will be delivered sometime this morning or early afternoon.

Oh jeez, people. You have only ONE job, yet you manage to find dozens of ways to screw it up.

Home Depot has already refunded my purchase price and was supposed to call the package back. No way can I accept this shipment now.

Frantically, I try to return the call to say no, don’t do it! But of course, the caller’s automated system isn’t taking any messages just at this moment, for reasons unexplained. So today some poor driver (who, as far as I can tell isn’t even employed by that cursed congeries of incompetents, Non-Stop Delivery, but is with some subsidiary carrier) will arrive only to be told to take his shipment away again. I sure hope he’s not being paid on the basis of his number of successful deliveries.

Ah well. Life goes on. At least the sun is shining. Or will be. It’s 4:45 a.m. right now, so not much solar power. And lots of fog, both outside and in the brain.

I’ll be back with more blogitude later.


  1. jed
    jed July 13, 2018 5:43 am

    Gotta wonder whether you could take the shipment, then call Home Depot back and get them to charge you for it. If their CS is as good as you’ve mentioned, I’ll bet they’d figure it out. OTOH maybe it’s better to just let it all drop. If you accept it, at worst, you’re on the hook for whatever the original purchase was.

  2. Claire
    Claire July 13, 2018 5:46 am

    I fear that trying to get Home Depot to charge me for a canceled order could open a larger can of worms than this has already become. Besides, I don’t want to see Non-Stop Delivery rewarded for their malfeasance.

    The Monk’s already drawing out the wooden scaffolding we’re going to build.

  3. Fred M
    Fred M July 13, 2018 6:16 am

    I suggest you accept the shipment; call Home Depot and ask for a return shipping label; and see if they would be willing to sell you the shipment minus the shipping costs.

  4. ~Qjay
    ~Qjay July 13, 2018 7:10 am

    You don’t have to accept a shipment when it arrives. You cancelled it, and while the driver is probably paid by the number of stops, among other things, yours should still count. You might help him by printing a copy of the cancelled order.
    You could also accept it, use it, then return it due to their error. You are due compensation for your time and trouble and storage space, after all. It might seem unethical, but remember how long they use your money for when you have to take in a return for defective merchandise.
    This one is all them.

  5. Jim Wetzel
    Jim Wetzel July 13, 2018 7:23 am

    Recipe for a blissful evening: start out early in the morning and hit it hard. Get a few big jobs, or lots of little ones, done. Work yourself sweaty and dirty. At the end of the day, take a good shower, put on clean, dry clothes, and sit down with a cold one (whatever “one” is to your taste) … that’s a pleasure that lazy people who sit around a lot will never know. That’s pretty much bliss.

    But you don’t need me to tell you that. It’s clear that you already know.


  6. Claire
    Claire July 13, 2018 8:09 am

    ~Qjay — I am definitely refusing delivery. On my door right now I have an envelope with a big DO NOT DELIVER message, which also contains further detail, including confirmation that I canceled the order.

    If they drop the scaffolding on my doorstep against my will, I might indeed use it, but I’d much, much rather not take that course.

    I tried again early this morning to get them to stop the delivery, but their chat rep was like a robot. “The shipment arrived on our destination dock at … the shipment is now on the truck and scheduled for …” In the end, she said she couldn’t do anything, which I believe. But the worst thing about this experience (so far) has been dealing with people who act as though incompetence and misinformation are business as usual.

  7. just waiting
    just waiting July 13, 2018 8:12 am

    I’m with Qjay on this. Let them deliver, then call HD and ask what they want to do about it.
    If its off the truck and the truck is gone, I wouldn’t be surprised if HD told you to keep it, free.

  8. ~Qjay
    ~Qjay July 13, 2018 8:20 am

    @Just Waiting So, if Claire were to be taking a walk, and the delivery driver delivered it anyhow…

  9. Comrade X
    Comrade X July 13, 2018 9:27 am

    That ice tea and a lawn swing sure sounds good to me!

    I hope that becomes more of a habit!

  10. Michael Jordan
    Michael Jordan July 13, 2018 11:00 am

    My advise is accept the delivery – and wait for Home Depot to figure it out

  11. Jim B.
    Jim B. July 13, 2018 11:00 am

    If this is a courier service company then they’d have the ability to accept a refusal, provided you let the driver know. Unless there’s a signature required, they’ll drop it off unless you somehow let them know you don’t want the shipment.

  12. Claire
    Claire July 13, 2018 11:03 am

    I hear what you guys are saying, and if “free” delivery were to happen, I’d be willing to take advantage of it. But Home Depot is great to deal with (other than hiring a crappy shipper) and my conscience nags me.

    After trying and failing a couple of times to stop the shipment via the courier, I went back to HD’s chat line and got a rep who tells me she was able to talk to an actual person in the actual shipping department who said they’d contact the driver and tell him not to show up here.

    Now, if they STILL deliver it after this, that’s on their own heads, I agree. But I had to do what I could.

  13. patrick fowler
    patrick fowler July 13, 2018 11:14 am

    Hi Claire…That Fed Ex guy hit home with me. I do boat graphics,artwork,lettering on the waterfront here. 9 Months ago an attack of colitis and a viral infection that went with it left me almost totally deaf with inner ear damage, there are also some balance issues. My regular customers helped me find work-a-rounds so I could keep working.We text and e-mail lots more than we did before. The Fed Ex guy and Joel out in the desert, and now myself know that getting the job done is what really matters…and as dad said: can’t never did anything. Pat

  14. Claire
    Claire July 13, 2018 11:36 am

    “My regular customers helped me find work-a-rounds so I could keep working. We text and e-mail lots more than we did before.”

    I’m sorry you got hit so hard — but thank heaven for loyal, helpful customers and your can-do attitude. (What a great-sounding job, too.)

    Here’s another interesting desert guy besides Joel. The late T, whom Joel talks about with such fondness, was from a family with a tragically strong streak of degenerative eye disease. T himself didn’t have it, but one of his relatives — completely blind — lived as a desert hermit. Spikey place, the desert. I can’t imagine living in it without sight. But he did, happily, for many years.

  15. Claire
    Claire July 13, 2018 11:39 am

    “That ice tea and a lawn swing sure sounds good to me!

    I hope that becomes more of a habit!”

    Me, too, ComradeX. Me, too. I was thinking that as I lay there on the comfy cushions of the porch swing. Why don’t I do this more often? (I mean, aside from the fact that it’s generally raining 10 months out of the year.)

  16. Claire
    Claire July 13, 2018 11:41 am

    Two guys showed up on a big truck. I explained the situation. They were very polite and said they had other deliveries in the area, so no problem.

    Sorry, all you larcenous friends. 🙂 The scaffolding is on its no-doubt slow way back to HD.

  17. patrick fowler
    patrick fowler July 13, 2018 11:57 am

    Yes Joel should write about T, he sounds like the real thing. It is a cool job, it started when I was living on an old wooden sailboat …but that’s another story. Pat

  18. Larry Arnold
    Larry Arnold July 13, 2018 12:39 pm

    Good on you, Claire. Integrity never keeps you awake at night.

  19. Comrade X
    Comrade X July 13, 2018 3:03 pm

    I found my propane heater (it was a gift) for my porch allows me to be outside a lot more during that 10 months of rain. I know rain ain’t the same as sunshine but being outdoors is part of the cure methinks for the rainy day blues the PNW gives us in those 10 months.

    Hopefully your new porch will allow for the needed rain protection too.

  20. Claire
    Claire July 13, 2018 6:28 pm

    “I found my propane heater (it was a gift) for my porch allows me to be outside a lot more during that 10 months of rain.”

    I’d love to have something like that for the screen porch (built last year). I’ll probably never sit out on the front porch in bad weather because that’s the hard-weather side of the house. But the screen porch is ideal. It’s bigger and the hard weather can be kept out of it.

    I saw a tabletop propane heater the other day at a garage sale. I even have a couple of five-gallon tanks that I could hook up to it. I probably should have checked it out more closely.

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