Wednesday, May 10, 2017
Why Am I So Cranky?
This morning, as I was making my coffee, I realized we're basically out of milk. There were about three drops in the bottom of the carton. I put those three drops in my coffee and scrounged around in the refrigerator until I came up with an expired container of single cream -- which fortunately wasn't too expired -- and I used some of that, too. Morning crisis averted.
When I opened the cream, I noticed that the package, underneath the Waitrose brand name, bore a statement that said, "Produced with care by farmers who share our values." Something about that statement annoyed me. How does Waitrose know my values? I could be an axe murderer -- all I did is buy their cream. There was no values test at the cash register. Or do they mean their values, in which case, why do I care?
Not only that, but aren't the cows doing the producing?
Maybe I am just especially prickly this morning. Yesterday I had to get in touch with our bank, Barclays, because out of the blue they sent us a letter saying they were upgrading us to a new kind of account. They made it sound fabulous, of course, involving rewards like free coffee at a certain chain of pastry stores, but I was wary. Does this new account come with fees? A minimum balance? They said they were going to send me a new ATM card, in which case, would I have to re-authorize all the billing that goes through my existing ATM card? Gawd!
So I called Barclays on my lunch break, and at first I couldn't even get past their security questions, which are so specific that unless you're staring at a statement, you can't answer them. Which made me even angrier, because I didn't want to have to make this call in the first place, and I'm afraid I gave the guy on the phone an earful. I called back in the evening, statement in hand, much calmer, and ironically, in the end, the bank eased my concerns and I assented to the upgrade anyway.
At work we're doing library inventory, which means scanning the barcode on each and every book. It may sound tedious, and it's complicated by a laptop computer that occasionally drops its connection with the school wi-fi. Shifting the books on the shelves can be hard and dusty work. But I like the task -- it lets me stand quietly in the stacks and think about things while the bar-code reader mindlessly beeps-beeps-beeps over each volume.
(Photo: A big ol' blooming bush, which Dave tells me is called "California lilac," near St. Pancras.)