My good friend, Frank, recently purchased a new Ma…

My good friend, Frank, recently purchased a new MacBook. It’s white plastic, and after about a week of light use, the area under the mouse has started to yellow (see image).



Now, I can tell you a couple of things about Frank:

He is a huge fan of Savon de Marseille and I know first hand that he is scrupulously clean.

Frank barely uses his home computer — so cumulatively in the time since he bought it, I can’t imagine that he has used it for more than say, 12 hours.

Now, as everyone knows, I’m a HUGE Apple fan, and I simply believe that Apple products are superior in make and function. However, the fact remains that the computer has yellowed, which is simply unacceptable.

Uncharacteristically, Apple has barely acknowledged the problem here . Seems to me to be more a more typical Microsoft-type response than one we’ve come to expect from Apple.

Frank contacted AppleCare this afternoon, and after a 40 minute wait, was informed that Apple will replace the part that is yellowing, which leaves Frank without a computer for at least a week — not to mention the aggrivation of having to box it up, haul it to the subway, truck it to the FedEx shop, and then hope that he’s around when FedEx drops it off next week.

It’s simply unconscionable that after voting for Apple with his dollar, Frank has now had to invest his time, energy, and expense to get the defective computer repaired.

So what gives? How will Apple respond? How about a free year of .mac for the trouble? Better yet, how about picking up the computer and dropping off a loaner for use in the meanwhile? If I were in charge of AppleCare, I’d take this as an opportunity to overnight a MacBook Pro loaner for use while the MacBook is being repaired. What better way to introduce a loyal, but temporarilly dissatisfied customer to a significantly more profitable product?

More importantly, and infinitely more serious, what I want to know: Is the plastic leaching toxic chemicals into Frank’s apartment? Is it leaving toxic residue on his hands?

Any voices from Apple out there that might like to respond?

The Gap Saga Continues. OK, so I don’t want my bl…

The Gap Saga Continues.

OK, so I don’t want my blog to turn in to a rant, but it is, so whatever.

So if you read the entry below, this Dave kid from the Gap swore up and down that I’d get my t-shirts by Wednesday afternoon. Quel surprise, Wednesday afternoon comes and goes, no shirts.

So, about 8pm, I get an e-mail from Gap customer service:

Dear Alex ,

Thank you for contacting us regarding order #11W3HPW . We have received the information from our Distribution Center regarding the Fitted stretch T , in black , large . They have determined that this item is in the correct location, and a new order may be placed for Fitted stretch T.

As a gesture of our sincere apologies in this matter, we have issued a free standard shipping courtesy to the following e-mail address: alexbitterman@mac.com

You may use this courtesy towards placing a new order for the correct item.

If we may be of further assistance, please contact us via e-mail at custserv@gap.com or by calling 1-800-427-77895. Our Customer Service Consultants are available 24 hours a day for your convenience.

Sincerely,

Jules
Customer Service Consultant

So, I’m like, hm. This sucks — they screw up, they lie to me, and THEN I have to send the stuff back, AND order the correct sizes.

Um, hi. It’s called doing your JOB. I don’t think so.

So I write an e-mail back:

Hi Jules:

I’m very confused.

The shirts I received are clearly not the correct size (L). Though the label on the bag indicates size L, the shirt are actually marked M and XL T.

When I called on Monday evening, I spoke with Dave. He told me that he would send out 4 size L shirts along with a prepaid return tag. I explained to Dave that I am leaving for England on Thursday, and he swore up and down an blue streak that they would be here by Wednesday afternoon at the latest. He went in to a lengthy explanation that because this was a Gap problem, the order would be “expedited” and re-shipped without charge to me, and that the return of the wrong merchandise would be on your dime.

From the note you’ve sent, it seems to me that this isn’t the case, and that no order has been placed. While I had fully expected to receive the shirts today, I am quite disappointed to find that they have not yet arrived. Frankly, free standard shipping because of a screw up on your part isn’t much of a favor. How about getting my order right the first time? In the event that something goes wrong, how about making sure that I have the stuff ASAP?

This is a joke.

What has happened to the company that I have grown to love? This is the SECOND big screw up from Gap.com in one month. Something has really gone awry.

So far… no response.

I’ll keep you posted.

The Gap Saga Continues. OK, so I don’t want my bl…

The Gap Saga Continues.

OK, so I don’t want my blog to turn in to a rant, but it is, so whatever.

So if you read the entry below, this Dave kid from the Gap swore up and down that I’d get my t-shirts by Wednesday afternoon. Quel surprise, Wednesday afternoon comes and goes, no shirts.

So, about 8pm, I get an e-mail from Gap customer service:

Dear Alex ,

Thank you for contacting us regarding order #11W3HPW . We have received the information from our Distribution Center regarding the Fitted stretch T , in black , large . They have determined that this item is in the correct location, and a new order may be placed for Fitted stretch T.

As a gesture of our sincere apologies in this matter, we have issued a free standard shipping courtesy to the following e-mail address: alexbitterman@mac.com

You may use this courtesy towards placing a new order for the correct item.

If we may be of further assistance, please contact us via e-mail at custserv@gap.com or by calling 1-800-427-77895. Our Customer Service Consultants are available 24 hours a day for your convenience.

Sincerely,

Jules
Customer Service Consultant

So, I’m like, hm. This sucks — they screw up, they lie to me, and THEN I have to send the stuff back, AND order the correct sizes.

Um, hi. It’s called doing your JOB. I don’t think so.

So I write an e-mail back:

Hi Jules:

I’m very confused.

The shirts I received are clearly not the correct size (L). Though the label on the bag indicates size L, the shirt are actually marked M and XL T.

When I called on Monday evening, I spoke with Dave. He told me that he would send out 4 size L shirts along with a prepaid return tag. I explained to Dave that I am leaving for England on Thursday, and he swore up and down an blue streak that they would be here by Wednesday afternoon at the latest. He went in to a lengthy explanation that because this was a Gap problem, the order would be “expedited” and re-shipped without charge to me, and that the return of the wrong merchandise would be on your dime.

From the note you’ve sent, it seems to me that this isn’t the case, and that no order has been placed. While I had fully expected to receive the shirts today, I am quite disappointed to find that they have not yet arrived. Frankly, free standard shipping because of a screw up on your part isn’t much of a favor. How about getting my order right the first time? In the event that something goes wrong, how about making sure that I have the stuff ASAP?

This is a joke.

What has happened to the company that I have grown to love? This is the SECOND big screw up from Gap.com in one month. Something has really gone awry.

So far… no response.

I’ll keep you posted.

You’ve GOT to be Kidding (or, why greed will put y…

You’ve GOT to be Kidding (or, why greed will put you out of business).

Step up my friends, an American Institution is dying. I could write a dissertation on this (and maybe I should) but the store you know and love as the Gap is in financial hot water, is shedding corporate executives like a dog sheds hair, and guess what? I think I know why.

I’m going to start a file called “WTF.”

The first entry in my WTF file:

Last week, South Street Seaport, Manhattan.

I haven’t been in a Gap store in about 2 years. I popped in to see what was new — the store was a catastrophe. SUPER uninterested workers (one was on her cell phone), HORRIBLE merchandise (in fact, I saw that the GAP folks have decided to re-introduce a navy blue hooded sweatshirt that I bought 17 years ago in the same store — funny thing, it wasn’t cool then either), and REALLY BAD graphics.

Here’s the deal: That’s how the Gap got started. When Don and Doris Fisher opened their first store in 1969, the Gap was a motley mess of jeans, ugly polyesther clothing, and records. Don and Doris opened a bunch of stores, and they were replicas of the first — chaotic trash bins.

The stores were nearly bankrupt, and on the verge of closing, when along comes Mr. Mickey Drexler. Mickey had vision, and transformed the Gap from dowdy and chaotic to dapper and, well, the American icon that is known around the world. Mickey’s creative force guided every facet of the company: merchandising, sourcing, interior design, real estate, and image/brand management. In his spare time, Mickey revolutionized Banana Republic, and conceived of Old Navy. Apparently, Mickey was able to make this vision a reality because he ran the GAP like a sweatshop in China. His opinion mattered most, and it was Mickey who had ultimate veto power, he was the arbiter of “GAPness.”

To make a long story short, the GAP Board of Directors gave Mickey the ax about a year ago, because the stock price was lagging. (Um, hi, we’re the board of directors and we’re greedy.)

So since Mickey got the boot, every Lanny, Molly, and Anne are lashing out with all of their pent up creative juice — and in essence, no one is driving the bus, the arbiter is gone, and the lunetics are running the asylum.

So, why the hell is this on my blog?

Well, when I went in to the store in Southstreet Seaport, I found this great black t-shirt, but to be honest, the service was so poor, and the music SO loud, I really didn’t want to give the store my business, so I went to gap.com, and ordered 4 black t-shirts, size large, no big whoop.

Today, I received a package from the Gap. I opened it to find not only the wrong t-shirts, but a strange assortment of sizes: 3 Medium, and 1 XL tall. (Here’s where the WTF comes in.)

So, I called 1-800-GAP-STYLE, and spoke with a rather strange guy named Dave. Our converstation went something like this:

Gap:

Me: 1

[Um, hi.]

Hi.

[What can I do for ya?]

!? With whom am I speaking?

[The Gap]

!!?? The Gap, is that your name?

[Oh, no, I’m Dave]

Hi Dave

[hi]

PAUSE

REALLY LONG PAUSE

(considering that he’s not saying anything, I figured I’d start:) I have a little problem

[sure, what’s up] (backround noises that sound mysteriously like AIM)

well, I purchased 4 shirts, and they are the wrong size.

[oh, that’s not good.]

PAUSE

um, no.

[so, what can I do for ya?]

Well, I’d like to get the right size shirts.

[yeah, no doubt, hang on a second, just let me… 945T, log on damn it… ugh, what the…? … 9-4-5-T, ok, enter, 2, find, send.]

PAUSE

(I’m thining about hanging up, but instead I say:) Boy, I’d really like to exchange these shirts.

[oh, yeah! sorry…]

and the conversation went on like this for about 1/2 hour. Apparently some new shirts are on the way.

It’s no wonder that current Gap financials are so poor. My prediction: Gap. Out of Business by 2010. If I were you, I’d dump your Gap stock (Ticker Symbol: GPS) now.

Sad thing that greed, huh? Well, I’ll let you know if I get my shirts…

You’ve GOT to be Kidding (or, why greed will put y…

You’ve GOT to be Kidding (or, why greed will put you out of business).

Step up my friends, an American Institution is dying. I could write a dissertation on this (and maybe I should) but the store you know and love as the Gap is in financial hot water, is shedding corporate executives like a dog sheds hair, and guess what? I think I know why.

I’m going to start a file called “WTF.”

The first entry in my WTF file:

Last week, South Street Seaport, Manhattan.

I haven’t been in a Gap store in about 2 years. I popped in to see what was new — the store was a catastrophe. SUPER uninterested workers (one was on her cell phone), HORRIBLE merchandise (in fact, I saw that the GAP folks have decided to re-introduce a navy blue hooded sweatshirt that I bought 17 years ago in the same store — funny thing, it wasn’t cool then either), and REALLY BAD graphics.

Here’s the deal: That’s how the Gap got started. When Don and Doris Fisher opened their first store in 1969, the Gap was a motley mess of jeans, ugly polyesther clothing, and records. Don and Doris opened a bunch of stores, and they were replicas of the first — chaotic trash bins.

The stores were nearly bankrupt, and on the verge of closing, when along comes Mr. Mickey Drexler. Mickey had vision, and transformed the Gap from dowdy and chaotic to dapper and, well, the American icon that is known around the world. Mickey’s creative force guided every facet of the company: merchandising, sourcing, interior design, real estate, and image/brand management. In his spare time, Mickey revolutionized Banana Republic, and conceived of Old Navy. Apparently, Mickey was able to make this vision a reality because he ran the GAP like a sweatshop in China. His opinion mattered most, and it was Mickey who had ultimate veto power, he was the arbiter of “GAPness.”

To make a long story short, the GAP Board of Directors gave Mickey the ax about a year ago, because the stock price was lagging. (Um, hi, we’re the board of directors and we’re greedy.)

So since Mickey got the boot, every Lanny, Molly, and Anne are lashing out with all of their pent up creative juice — and in essence, no one is driving the bus, the arbiter is gone, and the lunetics are running the asylum.

So, why the hell is this on my blog?

Well, when I went in to the store in Southstreet Seaport, I found this great black t-shirt, but to be honest, the service was so poor, and the music SO loud, I really didn’t want to give the store my business, so I went to gap.com, and ordered 4 black t-shirts, size large, no big whoop.

Today, I received a package from the Gap. I opened it to find not only the wrong t-shirts, but a strange assortment of sizes: 3 Medium, and 1 XL tall. (Here’s where the WTF comes in.)

So, I called 1-800-GAP-STYLE, and spoke with a rather strange guy named Dave. Our converstation went something like this:

Gap:

Me: 1

[Um, hi.]

Hi.

[What can I do for ya?]

!? With whom am I speaking?

[The Gap]

!!?? The Gap, is that your name?

[Oh, no, I’m Dave]

Hi Dave

[hi]

PAUSE

REALLY LONG PAUSE

(considering that he’s not saying anything, I figured I’d start:) I have a little problem

[sure, what’s up] (backround noises that sound mysteriously like AIM)

well, I purchased 4 shirts, and they are the wrong size.

[oh, that’s not good.]

PAUSE

um, no.

[so, what can I do for ya?]

Well, I’d like to get the right size shirts.

[yeah, no doubt, hang on a second, just let me… 945T, log on damn it… ugh, what the…? … 9-4-5-T, ok, enter, 2, find, send.]

PAUSE

(I’m thining about hanging up, but instead I say:) Boy, I’d really like to exchange these shirts.

[oh, yeah! sorry…]

and the conversation went on like this for about 1/2 hour. Apparently some new shirts are on the way.

It’s no wonder that current Gap financials are so poor. My prediction: Gap. Out of Business by 2010. If I were you, I’d dump your Gap stock (Ticker Symbol: GPS) now.

Sad thing that greed, huh? Well, I’ll let you know if I get my shirts…