Rant of the Day…

My distaste for Voice Mail is widely known among my friends… I don’t like to get ’em, I don’t like to leave ’em. I prefer to distill my thoughts down to 160 characters or less of TXTy goodness, and I prefer to receive the same. I hate listening to long winded sales people leaving me all the blah blah before GETTING TO THE POINT and leaving me a phone number. I hate it when people leave me “OMG! I have some huge important thing/need/question/news to talk to you about, call me back” messages.

These things most of you know about me already.

Oh, and I hate HATE “para espanol, marque dos” automated prompts when I call places too, in the ever increasingly futile attempt to contact a human at customer service.

But I have a new annoyance, and I’m sharing in the hopes that if enough people start noticing how dumb it is, it will go away.

The annoyance, in a nutshell is the personalized voicemail greeting which is followed by automated-voice-lady instructions on HOW TO LEAVE A VOICEMAIL! Um, hello? Anyone who hasn’t encountered the “beep” and knows what to do after it doesn’t really need instruction, they need a time machine in which to ride back from 1975 to the present…

You know the message, it goes something like this… “Hi, this is Turd Ferguson. I can’t take your call right now but if you’ll leave me a message after the beep, I’ll get back to you” (now comes the automated lady) “To leave this person a message, you may begin speaking after the tone. To page this person, press 5, blah blah blah…. BEEP!”

It’s annoying enough that the person I wanted to talk to can’t come to the phone, and then that I have to listen to their (sometimes painfully witty) greeting, THEN I have to be told how to leave a message? I mean, why stop there? Why not tell me how to modulate my vocal chords and move my tongue such as to make speech? Why not inform me of my other options, such as hanging up the phone, whistling dixie, or poking myself in the eye with a sharp stick?

Bottom line, this wastes my time, and is redundant, and it wastes my time. (ha ha)

If this annoys you, too, please let me know after the beep… :)

20 things I wish I had known when starting out in life.

I just ran across this post over at ZenHabits and I thought it was well worth sharing. This is the “digest” version of the list (no details) but you should really view the post in full. Now, I have certainly yet to internalize all these pieces of advice, but I agree with all of them in principle if not in action. Have a look… See what you think… Maybe I’ll do a followup post as to where I stand on these.

  1. How to control impulse spending.
  2. You gotta stay active.
  3. How to plan finances.
  4. Junk food will come back to bite you in the butt.
  5. Smoking is just dumb.
  6. Fund your retirement, son. And don’t withdraw it.
  7. All the stuff you’re doing that seems hard — it will be of use.
  8. Don’t buy that used van without checking it out closely.
  9. That guy you’re going to sell your car to? On a gentleman’s agreement? He’s not gonna pay you.
  10. Make time to pursue your passion, no matter how busy you are.
  11. All that stuff that’s stressing you out — it won’t matter in 5 years, let alone 15.
  12. The people you make friends with are so much more important than your job or the things you buy.
  13. All that time you spend watching TV is a huge, huge waste of time.
  14. Your kids are going to grow up way faster than you think. Don’t waste a minute.
  15. Forget the drama. Focus on being happy.
  16. Pay more attention to blogs when you first hear about them. They’re more than just journals.
  17. Speaking of which, keep a journal. Seriously. Your memory is extremely faulty.
  18. Tequila is seriously evil.
  19. Yes, you can do a marathon. Don’t put this goal off — it’s extremely rewarding.
  20. All these mistakes you’re going to make, despite this advice? They’re worth it.