life, Relationships, thoughts Continued

Yes, 1-800-Flowers Completely redeemed themselves! I was finally contacted by a representative that did exactly what I was asking for. They send a dozen roses of my choice to my girlfriend. The extra bonus was that it happened right before her birthday, so she had an extra bonus for her birthday. Thank you to 1-800-flowers to listening and delivering a beautiful bouquet of roses!

RE: Important News on Your Order from 1-800-FLOWERS.COM!

The day after telling that I was going to dispute the charge with my bank and never order from them again, I received the following in my email:

Hello Jared,Thank you for shopping with 1-800-FLOWERS.COM

We apologize that your order was not delivered as per your specification. We can understand the level of disappointment this must have caused to you.

We value you as our customer and want you to be satisfied with our service, therefore do want to compensate you for this matter. As a token of apology, we propose to redeliver the order with a note of apology from 1-800-FLOWERS.COM. Please inform us at the earliest if this is acceptable to you.

Once again, we apologize for the inconvenience caused to you and look forward to your response, so that this issue can be resolved.

If you have any other questions or concerns, please do not hesitate to contact us at the address listed below. You can also contact us at our customer satisfaction number, 1-800-468-1141.

##### ####
Sales and Service Specialist

I'll admit. I was pleasantly surprised to receive this email. My reply:
I would greatly appreciate this. Thank you for valuing my patronage.
Then, I received the following email:

Hello Jared,Thank you for shopping with 1-800-FLOWERS.COM.

We again apologize and would be glad to redeliver your order but
unfortunately, the product is not available with us. We offer you a redelivery of your order at no extra cost to you. For redelivery, we request you to please select an alternate product of the same value. Please get back to us at the earliest so that your issue can be resolved to your complete satisfaction.

If you have any other questions or concerns, please do not hesitate to contact us at the address listed below. You can also contact us at our customer satisfaction number, 1-800-468-1141.

####### #####
Sales and Service Specialist

There’s just no winning for these guys. An alternate product of the same value, which means that I have to go pull up the original receipt and then go searching on their website for a product of the same value. I sure hope that at the very least, they mean the value of what I paid for it and NOT the value of the crap they sent.

I’m much of a ranter. I mean, of the 202 posts I’ve put on WordPress so far, I’ve only classified 32 of them as rants vs. 84 as cool stuff. I’m not sure what happened at 800 Flowers. Was there a management change? Or did I just get stuck with a crappy set of flowers on Valentine’s Day? Oh well.

So, here is the bright side. This is an opportunity for me to really let that special someone know how special she really is because I’m going to put this extra time into making sure that she gets the best flowers available 😀

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Did Mr. Fire Attract Emergency Surgery

Reply to: Beyond Marketing by Dr. Joe Vitale: Did I Attract Emergency Surgery?

I love Mr. Fire aka Dr. Joe Vitale. He is an incredible inspiration in every area of life. I first attracted him into my life with some compelling advertising copy for the Gravity Defyer Shoes. His Hypnotic Writing Wizard software is a great tool for anyone working on any writing project (be it advertising, a book, or any other writing to motivate someone to action!) His books and audio will make a difference in your career, relationships, and life. He is also a contributor to the smash hit: “The Secret“.

I was surprised to read that he was rushed to the hospital to have his appendix removed. My first question was, “Is he okay?” This type of surgery is fairly common. In fact, my coworker, Rennie, had his appendix removed at the 2006 Consumer Electronics Show. So, the question following that was how does it apply to the law of attraction?

I realized something. I was relating to Dr. Vitale’s experience as something bad. I realized that my relationship to illness is that it (illness) is bad. I remembered back to a conversation I had with an ex-girlfriend about illness. What I created then was that illness is just my body’s way of adjusting to transformation.

This holds true to Dr. Vitale. His appendix removal was the result of his body telling him something. The most obvious message? “Remove me NOW!” The not so obvious messages? I think Mr. Fire figured it out in his post that I am replying to.

That illness is something negative is really just a story that we are telling ourselves. What is really happening is exactly what our body is supposed to do given the circumstances and environment we are in. We don’t question whether our skin should burn if we stick or hand in a fire, right? The same thing holds true in a more subtle way through out everyday life. It’s a matter of listening 😀

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The Future of the Web

I love open source. I love the idea. I love the practice.

The concept of open source software is pretty simple. The community freely, openly develops software, each individual collaborating and contributing to others in the community. The result… It’s the future on the Internet.

My former swing dance partner (Denise Gibson) wanted to create a website for her students. She teach swing dance, ballroom, swing dance, and other styles of dance at local colleges and studios. She wanted to provide them with a web experience where they could bond as a community, communicate with each other, meet new people, and enjoy a multimedia arrangement of dance information.

I wasn’t sure where to start. It’s been a while since I was out of the IT game. Of course, it never occurred to me to develop a website for her based on or any Windoze platform for that matter. So, I played around with the applications available through my hosting service.

WOW! What a selection!

I stumbled across an application called Joomla. Mind you, by this time, I had evaluated Xoops, Geeklog, Serendipity, and a slew of others. Something about Joomla just really kept me interested. Sure, it has one ridiculous flaw in the fact that an article can only be placed into a single section+category. Hell, they should have talked to me about my infamous name/value pair class I developed back in the days of the psychic chat network. Those were the good ol‘ days, but I digress.

Joomla is as extensible as you can get. Build a community, host discussion boards, member managed blogging, private messaging, newsletters, AJAX shout boxes, eCards, contact management… The list goes on forever, literally. People in the Open Source community are developing tons of projects for Joomla every week.

In a matter of weeks, I developed a community website that had many of the same features as Myspace (minus the abundance of bugs). Granted, does not have 11 million members, but that’s besides the point. I encourage anyone to test out Denise’s website. Even if you don’t know anything about dance, take a look and see what is possible in just a matter of days with open source software. Who knows… You might just find yourself picking up a pair of dance shoes after all!

Folks, this is where the web is going: community building websites with multimedia entertainment, newsletters, cool features. And it’s all going to be free!!! –

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The Web is an Ineffective Method of Communication

I love the conversations that people have about Internet communication. I’m in a team management leadership program right now. The entire program is based upon being in communication with others and creating a listening of others that empowers them. What I find interesting about the course is that participants have created a listening of Internet communication as ineffective. That is to say that in the realm of communication, most participants view communication via the web and email as ineffective.

I’ve had a number of conversations with people in the course and other people in my life about how they relate to Internet communication. One of my favorite quotes is, “If you really want to communicate with someone, verbal communication is the best way to go”.

There are a couple of errors in this statement. First, verbal communication essentially means communication with words. Modern definitions of verbal have twisted it into meaning oral communication as opposed to written communication. However, the true meaning of verbal is “of or pertaining to words”. Nothing in the original definition implies oral vs written.

The second problem with this statement is that it implies that one must speak with another person in order to be in communication. Now, what I find interesting about this is that written communication was invented specifically to make communication available to more people.

Written word has the ability to become timeless. Written word has the ability to make us and our communication live on forever. Where would we be is Shakespeare was only communicated through oral communication? Where would we be if the US Constitution was never written down but just communicated in oral conversation?

The moral of the story is that the web, being part of written communication, is a very powerful method of communication. You can gain interest from people in whatever you are up to through oral or written communication. The web and community websites (more about this later) are very effective methods of communication.

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My First (and only) West Coast Swing Dance Choreography

It is Fall 2005. I’ve been teaching swing dance with Denise Gibson at Moorpark College for a couple of semester. We both love West Coast Swing. We’ve been taking lessons from the world famous Sonny Watson, and we’d both love to bring it more exposure in the college community.

We start teaching beginning West Coast Swing to a beginning ballroom class. Now, for those of you who know anything about West Coast Swing, it is not as easy or simple as some of the other forms of swing. When it is done right, West Coast Swing is the coolest looking dance on the planet. Period.

West Coast Swing, however, is not an easy dance to learn. Nor is it an easy dance to teach, let alone to beginners. Denise and I are doing our best to prepare the students at Moorpark for a 6 week master class in West Coast Swing with Sonny Watson. When Sonny arrives, the students are excited! They are doing a great job. They are struggling but making excellent progress!

Next thing you know, the six weeks are over, Sonny is finished, and the beginning dancers now have 8 weeks to prepare for the dance concert at the end of the semester! Here is the result:

Remember! These are all beginning dancers. Some of these people have never danced a day in their life before this class. Some, this is their very first partnered dance class. For all but a handful, this is the first time they ever heard of West Coast Swing Dance. One semester! Look how clean they are. I’m so proud of how well they all did 😀

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Oprah Knows the Secret

That’s right folks 😀 Oprah is going to have the creator of “The Secret” and several of the contributors on her show next Wednesday.

Want to make a difference in someone’s life? Share “The Secret” with them. You can view it online now for $4.95 and then get a coupon for the same price off the DVD. That essentially gets you the most powerful movie on the market for free. Enjoy!

The Secret ::: Official Release of The Secret Movie

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One of my Favorite Swing Dance Pieces

I’m a lover of Swing Dance. My first love was Lindy, but West Coast has really stolen my heart. However, I will never forget some of the great memories I’ve had with Lindy. My first dance teacher, Denise Gibson, has gotten hip with the times. She’s posting videos of some of the dances she’s put together over the year on youtube.

About 9 months prior to the release of The Pink Panter starring Steve Martin, the Moorpark College Swing Dance Club performed a routine to the Pink Panther Theme. Denise and I choreographed the piece together, and it is one of my favorite pieces I ever did with the MCSDC.

YouTube – Pink Panther

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