Epson Is Evil

I adore finding a new post at Sand-In-The-Gears! Its like chocolate, surprise chocolate that your husband has hoarded against a really bad day. My husband has found that sneaking up on me and presenting good chocolate produces a little instinctive "ooooo" sound that amuses him. But I digress ...

Today Tony posted about love-n-taxes, but captured my attention with a brief reference to his struggle with Epson. I suppose its wrong to laugh at people that buy non-HP. I'm not perfect. I laughed a lot.

Not at Tony, but at the memories it brings up of working tech-support for a well-known software company. See, the human-resource guy had a theory that it would be easier to teach me about computers than it would be to teach a techie about being nice to old people. It was a novel concept. It might have been a good plan, if it had actually involved training me about computers. As it was, they gave me a session one morning to make sure I could operate windows (very basically) and then a session in the afternoon to introduce me to the hundreds of products I'd be supporting. Then they put me in a cube and turned on the phone. It was interesting.

During my time there, I learned a lot about those products and computers in general. Eventually my co-workers quit flinching everytime they saw me. In fact, they learned to love me. I had a skill none of them possessed ...

I could talk to old people without either party bursting into flames. I could utter the phrase "scoot the pointy-thing over until it touches the little X" with a straight face. I could assure the elderly that everybody cries sometimes, and it would be ok.

After awhile I became a fluffy legend in our little department, along with the five others in our "experimental" group of non-techies. I would look up to see crazed techies standing in the door of my cube, desperate to convince me to trade any hard-tech-call for the crying man on their phone.

But how does that lead to my fear and loathing of Epson? Well, some of our products had "issues" with some brands. Theoretically, that should have been fixable by downloading a new driver. But, if they're making a difficult product what makes you think they're making easy drivers!?!

The ONLY brand that never created problems was HP. It was such a relief to hear "I have an HP printer" from the caller. Then came the day that we got THE call ... the exception that proved the rule. Our program wouldn't print in color on the HP printer. I did forty-million trouble-shooting things, nothing. I finally admitted defeat and moved it up the chain to the in-house-techie-expert-guys. He told me that HP printer didn't print in color and I should have known that. He was a little bit of a jerk. I called the customer back. He told me it printed everything else in color, which he had already told me. So ...

I called HP. They're very nice people who understand that sometimes your expert is a jerk and your caller is desperate and you're just trying to get through the day. As it turned out, that printer-model had been fitted with a color-upgrade (which accounted for the extra letter on the end of the model number) and needed a special driver installed a special way to fix my program. They sent me the driver and the instructions and told me its ok to cry sometimes. Just kidding. I didn't actually cry. But ... I did learn to LOVE HP!

How does the story end? Well, I was in a mood and a half by the time I had given it some thought. So, I did what any traditional Southern lady does. Kill them with kindness. I wrote a gentle, sweet informative note to the in-house-tech-expert. Copied to his boss. And my boss. And our bosses boss. Shortly thereafter, our in-house-tech-expert began to experience a whole new level of intensive supervision. Bwahahahahaha!

I'm not sure traditional Southern ladies should make the "mad scientist's bwahaha" sound, but somehow it seems appropriate.

Make Waves

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