The Most Horrible Car Buying Experience Ever — Conclusion

Most Horrible Car Buying Experience - ConclusionAs detailed on yesterday’s blog post, I bought a new car recently and had the most horrible car buying experience ever.

When I brought the new car home, I parked it in the driveway thinking I might want to go somewhere that afternoon.

About 5:00, I drove it into the garage that I’ve parked in for the past 19 years.

The new car, however, was obviously much wider than the old car — and as I pulled it in for the first time,  the rear-view mirror on the driver’s side scraped the wooden garage door frame with a sickening sound. Then, the entire back of the mirror assembly popped off and flew out of sight! (This was less than five hours after I’d brought the brand new car home from the dealership.)

Most Horrible Car  Buying Experience Ever - ConclusionI couldn’t open the car door to see where the piece was because the car was half in and half out — with the mirror wedged against the wood. I was sure that I would run over the part and smash it to pieces, but really had no options.

Slowly backed the car out – amazingly enough – without running over the missing car part, but the wood on the garage door had a gouge in it and when I found the mirror back, it had white paint and scratches on it. Luckily, I popped it on and it seemed to be secure. (Was planning a trip five hours from home that weekend and figured I’d find out for sure if the part blew off on the interstate.)

It was the perfect ending to a horrible experience. Continue reading

Posted in car, horrible car buying experience, new car, Nissan, thoughts tips and tales | Tagged , , , , | 1 Comment

The Most Horrible Car Buying Experience Ever

The Most Horrible Car Buying Experience Ever

After driving Goldie (my previous car) for 11 years, it was time to get a newer model for long-distance travel — even though she still ran like a champ.

Many people enjoy — or at least look forward to — buying a new vehicle, but I had a truly unbelievable car-buying ordeal from start to finish.

I wanted a Nissan Sentra, because I’ve had three of them and they’re great, long-lasting cars that get good gas milesage and are reasonably priced. Owned one Sentra for 15 years and it was still going strong after 200,000 miles and a teen-aged son learning to drive on it.

Have also had all my service and repair work done at the dealer in North Charleston where I bought my last new car. The garage is located near my work, and for more than 20 years, the service staff has been friendly and courteous. They’re great about driving me to work when my car’s in the shop, picking me up after work and giving me a loaner car when mine will be in the shop overnight.

1)   A couple months ago when the car-buying experience began, I went to the dealership on a Saturday but they were so busy that nobody would wait on me — or even speak to me. There was a  huge crowd in the showroom and it was like they were giving cars away! So, ignored, I left — even though I had money in my pocket and wanted to buy a car that day.

2)   Called the dealership a few weeks later to make an appointment for after work with a salesman. Several days went by and I had to call a second time, because the salesperson I left a message with never returned my call. When I reached him again, the young man told me “he’d been too busy” to return my call. When did salesmen get too busy to sell a car? Continue reading

Posted in horrible car buying experience, new car, Nissan, thoughts tips and tales | Tagged , , , | 1 Comment

Great Marketing Idea: Spell Words using a Human Alphabet!

Great marketing idea: Spell words with people

When a corporate restructure began at my workplace — to become a “competency aligned organization (CAO)” — my job was to create an educational campaign to teach thousands of employees around the world what CAO was and how it affected them.

I made a series of informational posters and sent them to designated people in our major sites to display in common areas. The last poster was a Jeopardy-style board with questions about information on the previous posters printed on little “doors” and answers that appeared when people opened the “doors.”

To create a unique visual to attract people’s attention to my article in the employee newsletter, coworkers and I posed, and the photographer used Photoshop to transform us into the shape of letters — spelling the acronym with a human alphabet.

The photo was inspired by a billboard advertising a local hospital that used an acrobatic alphabet!

Here’s a graphic showing how to make letters using people.

Don’t know how much of an impression the photo left on employees… but it was definitely one of the most fun photos shoots we ever did.

Posted in acrobatic alphabet, human alphabet, marketing promotion, newsletter, thoughts tips and tales, work | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Confess: How Did You Get Your Name?

Confess: How did you get your name?

I was formerly a corporate trainer and once led a group event at work using the following theme as an icebreaker: Tell us how you got your name.

We went around the room and nearly everyone had an entertaining tale to tell about how their parents picked their names. Some were romantic and some were silly, but they were all interesting.

It was easy to remember people’s names during the event once you had a memorable, real-life story to associate with it.

You could tell that everyone was delighted to tell “their story,” because – after all – when do we ever get to tell people how we got the name that defines who we are? Continue reading

Posted in family, name, thoughts tips and tales | Tagged , , , | 2 Comments

Meetup Groups: A Great Way to Pursue Hobbies and Meet New People

Meetup Groups: A Great Way to Pursue Hobbies and Meet New PeopleHave you heard about Meetup groups?

Local groups are created online at and are made up of people who are interested in specific activities. Meetups groups exist across the country.

There are 235 Meetup groups in the greater Charleston, S.C. area (and there may be more in your area). Local groups feature dancing, yoga, movies, crafts, dining out, creative writing, running, reading, golf, traveling, painting, swimming, music, wine drinking, sailing, tennis and much more.

Because there are so many diverse groups, it’s likely that you’ll find people who want to get together and do the things you love to do.

Continue reading

Posted in blogger meetup, Charleston, Charleston-area Bloggers, exercise, meetup groups, thoughts tips and tales | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Thrift Store Treasures: What I Did NOT Buy

Thrift Store Treasures: What I Did NOT Buy

Thrift stores have some fantastic buys, ya can’t deny that.

But they also have some weird stuff.

Continue reading

Posted in bargains, thoughts tips and tales, thrift stores, weird stories | Tagged , , , , | 2 Comments

Thrift Store Adventures Save Big Bucks and Count as Retail Therapy, Too

Goodwill retail store

Does shopping at thrift stores count as retail therapy? :) Heck, yes! Where else can you can save money and have an adventure at the same time?

Make every trip extra exciting by taking along a friend, splitting up to shop and try clothes on, then meeting later to share a laugh while showing each other:

1) The weirdest non-clothing item in the store

Continue reading

Posted in Goodwill, retail therapy, shopping, thoughts tips and tales, thrift stores | Tagged , , , , | 14 Comments

Mishaps and Fun on a Charleston Walking Tour

Charleston from a Kid's-Eye View**This is not a sponsored blog post; I just really like this book!

M, one of my best friends, wrote a fabulous walking tour book of historic Charleston, S.C. called Charleston from a Kid’s-Eye View: The interactive walking tour book for the young and young-at-heart. It’s intended for children, but is just as entertaining for adults. Instead of stating boring facts, the book directs walkers to watch for certain things on or around a number of different historic buildings and answer questions about them, so that it’s interactive – and fun.

Before she marketed the book M asked me to test several of the tour routes by walking them. I gladly agreed.

However, I ran into a couple of problems.

Continue reading

Posted in books, S.C., thoughts tips and tales, tour, walking tour | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

Boost Happiness: Bring Back Fun Activities that Fell Along the Wayside

Colorful kayaksRealized recently that there are quite a few activities I adore but rarely make time to do. It’s time to pump up the happiness quotient and bring on more joy!

My neglected “fun things to do” list is below — and I vow to find ways to do them more often!

What are some things you really enjoy but don’t do very often? How can you make it a point to bring them back to your life?

1) Play ping pong

Continue reading

Posted in beach, bike riding, fun, inspiration, kayak, ping pong, thoughts tips and tales | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Please Don’t Hug or Kiss Me at Work – Version 2, Sexual Harassment

Don't hug or kiss me at work

Here’s a longer, more complete version of the subject of yesterday’s blog post – unwanted hugging and kissing in the workplace. In the context of a series of similar incidents detailed below, the stories I related yesterday seem to take on a different light.

I’ve never been big on hugging. Especially people I don’t know very, very well. My girlfriends always kid me about it.

You’d think avoiding unwanted touching would be something a person could easily avoid.

Well, it’s a lot like my theory that dogs can sense when someone doesn’t like them, and they sniff and pester that one particular person relentlessly. I’ve had a number of occasions where I was the recipient of unwanted physical attention — and worse yet, it was in the workplace.

Continue reading

Posted in bad bosses, sexual harassment, thoughts tips and tales, work | Tagged , , , | 9 Comments