Sunday, June 04, 2006

Book signing and UPS

Our first book signing was today. A woman who owns a knitting store in Big Bear was the first person to come in. She actually arrived at 10:30, half an hour before Katherine. Actually, until 12:30 she was the only person to come in for the signing, and we were all feeling bad about the whole situation. Then all of a sudden, at 12:30, there was a rush, at one point there were 6 or 7 people milling around the books and looking at the samples. Janice and Barbara, two women who also go to Jewel City Knitters, a knitting guild Jessamy and I go to, came in.

We actually didn't get the books until last night. The publishers for some unknown reason didn't seem very eager to sell us the books, so we weren't able to actually make the order until last week, despite the fact that I first contacted them a month ago. David wasn't here Friday morning to receive the package, so they left a note saying it would be delivered later, David read it would be delivered from 12:00 to 2:00 on Friday, when I got in at 2:00 I looked at the UPS paper and saw it said 12-2 on MONDAY. So, of course I freaked out. I went on their website and scheduled a same day pick up, thinking that when UPS called back to schedule a time it would be at 4 or 5 o'clock. Nope, we had to go pick it up between 8 and 9 at night.

The UPS same day pick-up turned out to be frustrating and boring to the point of mind numbing, like waiting at the DMV. It worked like an oil deficient machine. There was even a line of cars to get into the parking lot, not because there wasn't enough parking spaces, but because they had to first look on several lists to find your name (they found mine), there were the unlucky (or lucky?) few who weren't even let into the parking lot and had to wait in their car by the curb.

Apparently, after the day's deliveries all the UPS trucks in LA drive to a couple of central locations where the packages are taken off the trucks and put into a warehouse. Except, some truck drivers for one reason or another don't get to the warehouse until after 8, then some of the drivers don't even bother unload the trucks. So the 5 or so people who are working at the same day pick up have to take down everyone's name and number, then go look for a package which might not even be in the right area, sometimes even going to where the truck is parked and looking through all the packages in the truck. There were maybe 40 people who came in for their package while we were there, two of which went up to the counter and complained very loudly that they want their package NOW, and about 20 of which kept pestering the workers. It would suck to work there. I ended up waiting an hour and 45 minutes for my package. Jurassic Park 3 was playing on a TV screen hanging from the ceiling. You would think, with all the stress that's associated with the job they would pick a movie that is a little more soothing and calm. But no. Instead, occasional screams echoed throughout the building. How appropriate. I think I thought it was ok in the movie theatre, not the best movie, but it served it's purpose. But at the UPS center the movie was dull and tedious, kind of fitting actually. The bizarre thing is that after all that standing and waiting (they only had three seats), everyone I saw walking out of the room were clutching a package and smiling. I guess we have short memories.

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