Monthly Archives: June 2011

Maybe I should have a category called Bank of America

Didn’t receive the letter from Bank of America so I went to consumerist.com and found some names (needs to be updated.) Ended up calling the Executive Customer Service number. I didn’t have to press a million buttons and I reached a live person right away.

The rep said she understood why I was so upset and would look into it but the first thing “we have to do is get you the reference note.” So she is sending it Fedex overnight. I have a tracking number and I think as soon as I finish this I will check it to see if it is real.

Still I am not happy with Bank of America. If I get the letter tomorrow I’ll be sure and report back and I will also keep the executive customer relations number handy and use that any time I have a reason to call. Lucky them.

I have a Chase credit card and twice over the many years that I’ve had it I didn’t receive a bill. Their customer service is totally useless. They refused to credit the late charge and even went as far as saying, “You pay your bill on time and we don’t make any money off of you. I can’t reverse the late charge.” Yes, it’s true someone really said that to me but first I was told that it wasn’t their problem I should take it up with the post office. I had to call the executive office to get the charge taken off. Actually I called to let them know why I didn’t want to do business with Chase Bank and the person I spoke with at the executive office was not happy and immediately reversed charges and apologized. I still have the card but I don’t use it anymore. I should probably cancel it.

Anybody have a bank they like doing business with? I’m open for suggestions!

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Filed under Banking, Long Island Living, Real life

A Big Head and Other Fine Highlights of the Day

I called Drew yesterday morning. I was in the city and was hoping to catch him before he left for work. I called him at home with my iphone. Click, click, click, click . . . I put in my secret password and made the call. The answering machine picked up. I didn’t leave a message.

Took a quick walk on the High Line with Hannah. It was way too hot. Ended up sitting in a coffeehouse drinking iced tea to cool off. Hannah had an iced cappuccino and an arugula salad. Met Pam and Jan there. Jan wanted to see the big head in Madison Square Park so we took a walk over to the east side.

A big head, a comfy bed, a cute pup -- a fine time was had by us.

It was a big head . . . a really big white head — in the middle of the park. Took a cab to Pam and Jan’s room on Restaurant Row — The French Quarter. Cute room, tiny, but most importantly it was air-conditioned. Hot day. We told Rachel to meet us at the restaurant at 5:00. Phone call at 4:00: A shrieking Rachel, “I’m locked out of my apartment. I wanted to take a quick nap before dinner.” “Where are your keys?” says me. “Probably on the kitchen counter.” Ahh, a Rachel moment.

Hey, did I tell you about Hannah’s “Rachel moment”? Sunday night we are parked outside of Hannah’s apartment. The car is packed with her luggage and an air conditioner. She looks for her keys and can’t find them. They are in Merrick in her bag in her room.We are in the city. Luckily we found her roommates, unloaded the car, put the air conditioner in the window, and took Hannah home with us. (Sibling side story.)

Dinner at Sosa Borella on 50th and 8th Ave. — still good. And, as usual, Rachel was late. Why on earth she decided to take a taxi in the height of rush hour — from East Village — I’ll never know. And she’s surprised when it takes forever! We had already finished a carafe of sangria and all the appetizers by time she sat down.

Pam and Jan left for the ballet at 7:00 and we sat while Rachel slowly nibbled at her food and ordered another sangria. Afterwards, Hannah went uptown and Rachel and I took a cab going down. I jumped out of the cab at 8:06 and made the 8:08 LIRR. Drew picked me up and I walked in the door and checked the home phone messages. The first message was long and just a bunch of psycho babble. What the hell was it? Who does this? Could this be a butt call?  “That sounds like you,” says my drew to me. And — you know  what — it did sound like me — and it went on and on and on. It was me. Gotta learn how to use my phone. I keep forgetting to END my phone calls.

Still waiting for the original copy of the Bank of America reference letter I requested almost a month ago.

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I Can Track Hannah’s Flight Wherever I Am

This is great. All day, wherever I am I can track Hannah and Sam’s journey back from Istanbul. Right now they are somewhere between London and New York sitting in First Class. Wonder if I can use my iphone to type my blog? The space bar on this computer is driving me crazy.

So how smart is this phone anyway? Is it smart enough to screen my incoming texts and respond to them appropriately? Let’s start with a list of mommy responses:

Yay!  — truueeee –what do you want me to do about it? — ginger, lemon, and honey tea — ? — kk — idk — pick up the phone and call — did u get a receipt? — look in the oven — call me — take a Tylenol — no, I’m not in the city . . . I could probably get a pretty good list together. I think mommies all over the world would like this feature.

So who is writing these yahoo news articles? Today another blurb caught my eye:

Peter Falk, TV’s rumpled Columbo, has died

. . . Somehow fittingly, Falk — the perfect choice to play Columbo — failed to be the first choice. Instead, the role was offered to easygoing crooner Bing Crosby. Fortunately, he passed.

Did he say “fortunately?” OMG, so how does Bing’s family feel about this? Fortunately?

Ah, I better check Hannah’s flight status . . . click, click, click, click: Flight is early by 14 minutes. While I’m at it better check my email, and, hmmm, the weather — Tomorrow will be much warmer than today.

Yay!

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Filed under Family, Long Island Living, Real life, Travel, Weather

“You’re a little off today,”

HE says this morning after biting into a bit of undercooked egg white. Just one bite mind you — HE doesn’t like yucky egg whites.  I offered to toss his undercooked eggs in the trash and cook up a new batch but HE said no. It’s not a big deal. But then HE took a bite of the other egg and, yet again, a bit of yucky egg white. If it wasn’t a big deal I don’t know why HE had to even mention it twice. HE ate every bit of food on his plate. I think I even saw him licking the plate when I turned to pour a cup of coffee.

I was distraught. I try very hard to make the perfect eggs every time. It’s hard for ME because I can only eat cremated eggs. Anything less and my stomach is a mess for the day. But this isn’t about the eggs. It’s about something more serious than a bunch of cooked ovum. It’s about my world.

“Yes, I feel a bit off this morning,” ME says. And I know why. My world has shifted. I have an iphone and all of a sudden life is different. Now when I get a one word text message that answered a question I asked 5 hours ago, I no longer have to go back to the sent text screen to find out what I asked earlier. I’ve downloaded a bunch of apps already. I can’t wait to use my Kayak flight status app tomorrow to check Hannah’s flight. I can check my email all day long, make a reservation on Open Table, look up a recipe on Cook’s Illustrated, and read a book anywhere, any time!

Of course now I need more friends. My iphone is sitting across the table from me and it is so silent.

My life is changing. I don’t have to go home to check my email. I can do it on the street, in a store, even in a park!

Ah, what’s that sound outside? It’s the mailman –Gotta run!

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Filed under Books, Everyday Woman, Food, Long Island Living, Real life, Travel

Momma Gadda Iphone

This was, like, one of the biggest decisions I’ve had to make in a long long time! To buy or not to buy an iphone. It’s not like I won’t use it. It’s just that it is going to mean I have to send an extra $25 plus tax to AT&T every month. When I told Drew that was my main issue he said, “Forget it, it’s not worth it!” So here I am –setting up my iphone. Bought a nice thin case and the AppleCare Protection plan too.

I’ve already sent one text, made two phone calls, and tried to sign on to my wireless network but I can’t seem to get the password right. Now it is asking me to set up my voicemail and I am following directions. I put in a password, I started recording a message and it is not working. Earlier I tried signing in to iTunes and couldn’t remember my Apple password. Finally figured it out and every step I take is more confusing than the next. But I am getting there!

I have to register the phone but I can’t get that plastic wrapping off the package. I’m sure this will get easier. I know it will. I know it will. Did I mention that my space bar is not working (sporadically) on my computer?

Called Rachel for some iphone advice. I now have a few very important free apps — Yelp, WxQuickie, Droid Light, and Kick Lite.  The Compass is already on the phone. Now I have to rearrange my home page and continue the search for more apps. I connected both of my Gmail accounts to my phone and I finally typed in the correct password for the house wi-fi. It’s not that I didn’t know the password, it’s just that my fingers are too fat .

Phone’s ringing. Wow look at the time. It’s Drew, “Hey babe, do you want me to . . . ”  He was offering to pick up dinner because he thought I would be busy with my new toy. Awwwwww, how sweet!  Cooked dinner and set up my voicemail. I am woman, hear me roar!

Weather report: Tomorrow will be about the same temperature as today. Yay, gotta love it!

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Filed under Empty nesting, Everyday Woman, Long Island Living, Real life, Weather

I Just Love This

I know its old news but I just need to get this out of my system. Here’s an excerpt of an article I read on yahoo.com Thursday morning.

Cars set on fire in Vancouver following loss

Angry, drunken fans ran wild Wednesday night after the Vancouver Canucks’ 4-0 loss to Boston in Game 7 of the Stanley Cup finals . . .

Later, looters smashed windows and ran inside department stores. The Bay became a target, with windows smashed to allow looters to get to the expensive Coach and Burberry purses. Merchandise went flying into the street.

Women rampaged through the main floor makeup department, tossing each other products and squealing in delight.

Angry drunken fans? Did all this really happen in Vancouver? We’re talking Vancouver, BC. Is this the same city that we visited last year where people would walk up to us when we were looking at a map and say, “Do you need help?” So many friendly happy smiley faces. Wait, am I getting them confused with the Seattle crew? Maybe, must be a west coast thing. Don’t remember being around so many friendly happy smiley faces
when I was living in San Francisco. Could they be happier now or was it the crowd I hung out with. Well, not really a crowd. I don’t think I ever really hung out with a crowd. One, two, maybe three at the most.

And “squealing in delight?” Who is writing this stuff? I could see this happening in Vancouver. But what an image I have stuck in my head . . .  friendly happy smiley squealing faces, oh my!

Eh, done for today. Maybe I’ll actually have something interesting to write about tomorrow – or not!

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I Need To Be Fed With Eggs

said Drew this morning:

Grade A, Cage Free with Harissa

Mmmmmmmmmm

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Filed under Empty nesting, Food, Long Island Living

Happy Fathers Day to All You Daddys

Off to Drew’s brother’s house today for a Fathers Day Brunch. Mmmm, I think there will be bagels and lox – my favorite! Should I bring my own tabasco sauce? Nah. Planning on picking up Rachel at the Hicksville train station at 12:15. So far all is as planned — it’s only 9:42 am — haha.

So, did I tell you that I am picking up a reference letter that is being faxed to my local Bank of America branch on Monday morning?

Many hours later:

Nice day, long day. Rachel made the train but Drew had to run home to get one of the presents we left in the house. We were a half hour late and it wasn’t even Rachel’s fault. Bagels and lox, cake and cookies, and presents galore. Nice day. We continued our Fathers Day celebration in the city. Drove Rachel to the city and had dinner there. No traffic on the way home. Long day tired. Need to rest up.

Tomorrow is a busy day. First I have to call the bank to see if they received my fax. And then . . .  and then . . . I told Rachel I would call her insurance company and see what I can find out. Apparently she used the website zocdoc.com and found 2 doctors, both said they accepted her insurance and each of them took a copay. Now it appears that the insurance company is claiming that  the doctors are out of network and won’t pay anything. So it should be a busy day.

Yankee game on. Score tied. Going to relax now.

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Filed under Baby boomer, Banking, Family, Food, Long Island Living, Real life

Thank Goodness for Speakerphones

Forget about summarizing . . . I am on hold now. If Bank of America can’t get this right can I trust them with my money?  Still no fax. Oops, just got a real person on the phone. She said the department I need to deal with is closed on the weekends. But she will resolve it and get the letter faxed over today. Yeah, I heard that one before!!!!

Anyone have a bank they can recommend?

That’s it for today. I’m beat already.

Still on hold. Still on hold . . . They are sending the fax over.

Picked up the fax and it’s WRONG!!!!! They listed too many accounts. I only wanted the joint accounts.

So I go home and call AGAIN . .  Finally I get someone on the phone who thinks he knows something . . . and you know what he says . . . we can’t do that (meaning only list the three accounts.) So after two weeks of bank reps asking me what accounts I want listed and wasting all this time he’s telling me it can’t be done — even though it was done yesterday but incorrectly. Nice, huh?

Mail just came — still no letter.

Did I mention that each of these phone calls over 45 minutes long? Do I sound aggravated?

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Bank of America Wants Me to Pay Them – – for what exactly?

“I’m going to exercise in a bit,” says my drew. “Oh good, I’m going to write about Bank of America on my blog,” I say. “Great, bitching about anything should get your readership up,” he replies. So here it goes:

I called B of A on Monday, June 6th, in the morning. I needed a reference letter. I spent a lot of time screaming into the phone –CUSTOMER SERVICE . . . A REAL PERSON . . . and a variety of other phrases. Each time the response was the same, “In order to serve you better . . . press 1 . . .” So eventually I pressed 1 and 1 and 2, and whatever it took to get me there. Used to be in the “old days” — and when I say old days I don’t mean when you actually dialed a number and immediately spoke to a real person– I mean when you start screaming into the phone and eventually you hear, “I’m sorry, I don’t understand your selection. Please wait while I redirect you to customer service.” That doesn’t happen anymore.

Where was I . . . oh yes, I eventually get to a real person and I tell him that I need a reference letter. He, apparently, knows what I am talking about. “There will be a ten-dollar charge,” he says. “Fine, how long will this take?” I say. “The request will take 24 to 48 hours to process and then we will mail it out.”

I had just come from my local B of A branch and someone there said I can have the letter faxed over to them. So I said to my guy on the phone, “I’d like to have it faxed to my local branch.” I figured this would speed up the process. HA HA. “It’s quicker if we mail it right out.” “Okay.” We are done chatting.

I wait a week. No charge on my account yet and no reference letter in the mail. I call on Wednesday, June 15th. I pressed all the right buttons and eventually I hear a human voice on the other end. I tell the voice I am waiting for the letter and he looks it up. “Says here it was processed on June 11th.” Hmm,” I say aloud, “that’s weird, on a Saturday? I really need this letter.” “Well, you should definitely get it by the end of the week,” he says, “Call Friday and they will fax it to your branch if you don’t receive it.” (hmmm, definitely? Call if you don’t receive it? Something’s not right!)

I call Thursday around 4 pm because I realized I needed the letter on Friday and my mail comes late. The voice says, “It says here it’s still processing . . .”  I tell him to fax the letter to my local branch. He starts to say something but I cut him off, “I need this letter and I want to pick it up tomorrow morning at my bank.” He gets his manager on the phone. She okays it and she wants to review everything because there is no letter to refer to. “You can pick it up at your local branch tomorrow morning. I’m going to fax it right over.”

Am I feeling confident? Not until I have that letter in my hand. I stop by the bank at 11:00 am on Friday, June 17. Nope, no fax! So I am now starting to twitch. I have the bank representative call to get the fax. She’s on hold . . . waiting, waiting, waiting. I thought she would have a direct number but no she doesn’t. I am not feeling good about this.

My bank representative tells me that the letter is being written and will Meanwhile, the mail comes and there is still no letter. I return to the bank a few hours later and pick up the letter. I go home and take another look at the letter — two checking and one savings account! No, how could that be? One savings account was listed as a checking account. I go online and look for the phone number but all I can pull up is the 800 number. Forget it, I jump in the car and drive back to the bank. The letter needs to be corrected but it needs to be faxed all over again. At least I don’t have to call the 800 number. I’ll leave that to the bank representative. So it’s Friday night and I still don’t have the letter but I spent plenty of time and gas to get it . . . all for a ten-dollar fee from Bank of America.

Hmm, what’s this in my email? An email from Bank of America saying “tell us what you think.”  Got to go now. Okay, I can do that.

Tomorrow: How to Summarize .

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Filed under Banking, Long Island Living, Real life