Monday, July 26, 2010

Praise for a Big Company?

I bash the "Big Boys" so often that I felt it was time I shared a story of the "Big Boy" taking my side over the "Small Player."

My Samsung TV is dying. It turns itself off and on at least 3 times when I try to turn it on and takes an average of 2 minutes to show a picture. To give you an idea, my computer turns on and loads Firefox faster than my TV shows a picture. The worst part is that it is a little over 3 years old. My old TV lasted 15 years and I treated it like crap. I dust my Samsung daily.

So anyway, I went to the forums in search of others with my same problem and I found thousands of us: basically everyone who bought my TV around the same time I did. The forums warned of a fight with Samsung to get them to fix it, but they would if you fought hard and long. I prepared myself for a fight and called Samsung.

Samsung, it turned out, was not prepared for a fight and was, instead very helpful. They asked for my TV's serial number and then confirmed it was part of a series that were made with a Power Supply defect that they would fix at no charge. Even better, I did not have to ship my TV to them; they would pay to send someone to me. I was happy and awaiting my call from the local Samsung repair center.

Today, Monday, I got a call from Lakes Electronics, the local Samsung repair outlet, and they informed me that they would not be repairing my TV. They said they were behind in the payments from Samsung and refused to honor any new contracts until they were paid by Samsung. I was shocked; mainly because this was none of my business. I called Samsung immediately, once again prepared for a fight, and once again Samsung disarmed me.

Samsung was shocked that Lakes Electronics would refuse service AND that they would give the excuse that they did. Not that it was or was not true, but that it was none of my business as a customer of both parties.

I asked the Customer Service person what my options were as it was out of Best Buy's warranty and nobody was willing to repair it. She checked and saw that Lakes Electronics were the only option for me. I sighed. They placed me on hold and then returned with the news of "we will repair your TV with our repair people or we will replace it for you, but you will not be charged and we are so sorry this has happened."

How can I be mad? I may have just become a Samsung customer for life.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

A Great Quote

Seth MacFarlane, the creator and main voice actor for Family Guy said something that I have been trying to say for a while now. He says it better.

"People in America, they're getting dumber. They're getting less and less able to analyze something and think critically, and pick apart the underlying elements. And more and more ready to make a snap judgment regarding something at face value, which is too bad."

This is true from Biden saying "Blitzkrieg" as a tactic and people screaming "he compared us to Nazis" to the current flap over the head of the USDA and her "racist" statement that turned out to be a tale of overcoming racism.

Slow down America and learn to listen and think. Stop reacting to what you THINK the other person is going to say and try responding to what they ACTUALLY say.

Monday, July 19, 2010

Why Fast Zombies?

I have been thinking about this question for a while now; pretty much since the birth of the Fast Zombie and the debate about them first sprung up. I think I have come up with both a justification for the Fast Zombie as well as the reasoning behind their creation.

First, the justification: Zombies are generally thought of as slow moving and stupid. This is mainly due to the deterioration of the organs, the setting in of Gangrene and the stiffening of the muscles that occurs with death: but what of the newly dead? It takes a period of time for those post-death conditions to set in and it is usually a much longer time than it takes the average person to succumb to a bite from a Zombie.

Logically speaking, for the first few hours of zombification, the person infected should be an undead version of themselves. They should be able to speak, recognize people and objects, retain motor skills, and would therefore be just as they were when alive. They could even be theoretically faster since fatigue would not be a factor. It would be over the course of several hours that they would lose these human traits and devolve into the Zombie of the 60's.

Now that (I hope) I have justified the Fast Zombie in your mind, why did they even bother screwing with the Zombie Formula in the first place?

When Night of the Living Dead first came out and Survival Horror was born, the scares came from the fact that monsters were us. The horror for Barbara solidified itself when her Zombie Brother came after her later in the film. It was not that it was zombie, but that it had been someone she loved who was now trying to kill her. I think that aspect is lost on modern audiences.

For people of my generation who grew up watching Mad Max films and playing video games, we saw the Zombie movie as some perverse fantasy world: it was just another apocalypse where we could fantasize about being bad-ass heroes. We watched the movies for the thrill of "what would I do" and mostly forgot the zombies were us.

As my generation grew up and started making our own zombie movies, we took the Romero-mystery out of Zombies and turned it from a "mysterious curse" to a disease; usually made by us. We lost sympathy for the zombie and therefore lost our fear of them, but Hollywood remembered that they used to scare us, not thrill us.

Enter the Fast Zombie!

We watched Night of the Living Dead and we all thought the same thing: I would live because the Zombies are so slow and stupid! No fear. No worry. We knew we could take our time to line up a head shot or even "Bruce Campbell" them with a chainsaw if need be. That all changed with films like 28 Days Later. Suddenly, the zombies were faster than we were; they were stronger; more cunning.

The Fast Zomibe took our fantasy where we were the bad-ass hero and turned us into prey. Zombie survival now required training and was not something anyone could do. Once again, we feared a world overrun by zombies.

Curse the Fast Zombie if you must, but realize that they, in their quick undead state of being, gave life to the Zombie Movie and brought horror back to us.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

A Posting of Mine From Another Blog

Are you a pervert and a Republican? Then Texas wants you. We have decided that the best way to stop the Mexicans from crossing the border is to stock the state with the most inbred, rabid, perverted freaks we could find, so naturally we looked to the GOP, or the Gang Of Perverts as we like to call 'em down here.

And if you are a pervert and a Republican and do not currently hold any office, we will be more than happy to redistrict the state to make room for you.

Texas: Gonna Make you Squeal Like a Pig