Bent Words

Bent Words

July 08, 2010

I'm SUCH an idiot.

Dude calls me this morning and inquires if we have rear brake pads for a 2005 Suzuki Vinson (LT500) ATV. I look it up and find that we don't have them (EBC FA317X or R) in stock but I assure him that we can likely get them ordered and in our store within 24 hours. IF he orders before noon. IF they're available in our Wisconsin warehouse. IF there aren't any snags with the people who pick the parts, with UPS who delivers the parts, and with our accounts payable person who is SUPPOSED to pay our bills.

(IF there isn't a devastating tornado in Janesville that wipes out the warehouse. IF Waukesha doesn't get washed away by a flashed flood. IF I don't die in the next sixty seconds prior to finalizing your purchase. IF your credit card hasn't been mysteriously swallowed by your dog... IF IF IF.)

Just as I'm about to check availability, Dude says he's going "check around" to see IF they're in stock somewhere else.

Meanwhile, I forget about it and go back to receiving parts and inventorying gaskets.

1:30PM Dude calls back, I happen to answer his call, and he asks if we can get those brake pads in by tomorrow.

I check availability on the FA317X pads and they're in North Carolina. I check on the FA317R pads and there are plenty in North Carolina, only three left in the Wisconsin warehouse.

"Hmmmm, I don't know if we'll be able to get those in by tomorrow, Sir."

"What? Isn't this the same person who I spoke to earlier and didn't you promise me that you get them in a day?"

I didn't promise him anything, number one, but I did cordially explain the situation.

"Usually, when there is a limited quantity of a certain product in one warehouse, despite it being closer, the distributor will ship the product out of the warehouse that has the larger quantity of product. And we do have a cut-off time for ordering parts but I will do the best that I can to get those brake pads to you by tomorrow."

"If you can't get them in by tomorrow, I'm not paying for them."

So I order the brake pads but the order to our distributor consisted of ONLY the brake pads. We needed to up the ante. We quickly added six tires and rushed the order off to Parts Unlimited. Based on the look on Cory's face, however, I knew something was wrong.

"Ummm, those brake pads are still coming out of North Carolina."

Fuck. Me. Running.

I knew it. And it makes sense to me but I knew it wouldn't matter to the customer. He would just be pissed. Despite the fact that I had explained to him all the circumstances involved in said transaction, all he heard was "one day." All the elements that must come together without fault to make his $35.00, last minute necessity possible for the weekend so that he could enjoy his time off were just destined to fail.

Why? Because he had attitude and that's the kind of person I most want to prove wrong and make happy. Right when he believes that we can't come through, and no one else has, that's when I want to prove that we can. WE can. That's when I work just a little bit harder to make things happen. After all, he doesn't need a liver transplant. He doesn't need to see his daughter's choir performance. He doesn't need to drive a little less erratically. He doesn't need a friend in a dire moment chocked full of suicidal thoughts. He doesn't need a roof over his head or a bed under his body.


He needs rear brake pads.

Rear f'ing brake pads for his crap-tac-ular, piece of shite, weekend joy ride that's probably been sitting idle with rotting tires in his seven car garage at his second home up north for the last two months, ATV.

But still, I search.

I probed our brake wall and fussed through our Vidmars. I poked around our boxes upstairs and rifled through our "Misc. Returns" bin and LO AND BEHOLD! I found him a set of FA137X brake pads.

I eagerly called Dude and left an elated message on his machine that we did, in fact, have the brake pads in stock and therefore he could pick them up at his leisure (before 7pm) today, if he so desired. I laid them away under his name and informed my co-workers of the triumph.

Then I went home. Early.

Did you catch the problem?

I somehow formed a major issue with dyslexia within the last 45 minutes of my leaving for I had laid away FA137X brake pads when the customer actually needed FA317X brake pads.

Needless to say, Dude was piiiiiiissed.

And I felt and still feel horrible. I feel like an idiot. I didn't mean to F it all up. I did not intend to come across as incompetent. I did not at all want to make a mess much less leave a mess for someone else to clean. That's not me and I normally don't screw up things like that. But I did. Luckily, we have the correct set of pads in stock. Right under the incorrect ones.

So Dude can come in tomorrow morning and have his brake pads by the weekend and all will be well again with the world.

IF I don't decide to toss them into the field behind the building, that is...

Written at 7:46 p.m.