Saturday morning I went to the dentist. During the HOUR AND A HALF I waited for my appointment (forced to watch Hocus Pocus of all shitty things), a woman came out to inform me I was up for my six-month checkup (I find this strange since it’s been 14 months since my last one, but as we will see shortly, this particular dental office has no math skillz) and if I’d like to come back, she’d take my x-rays. Now, I do not tolerate dental x-rays well. Aside from the one time I was conscious while the pulled a tooth, x-rays are hands-down the worst dental torture for me. Since I had not mentally prepped myself for them I told her I would LOVE for a dentist to look at my teeth, but no radiation today, thankyouverymuch. She told me the dentist needed x-rays to see my teeth. I found this strange because I have not even gone to dental school, and I can see my teeth just fine without x-rays. She was utterly perplexed as to why someone would decline such a thing. She promised me she’d go ask the dentist about it and I never saw her again.
In the meantime, I got my teeth cleaned. Since I was without insurance for six years, I’ve been playing a fun game of Dental Catch-Up wherein I go in for cleanings every three or four months instead of every six (or, you know, fourteen), and they charge me $77 a pop instead of $CoveredByInsurance. Funny thing is that they didn’t bother to tell me this the first time I went in for this sort of cleaning so I got a fun surprise. In the three times I’ve been since, they also charged me $77. But THIS time, they decided a new rule for this game would be to double the price and try to charge me $141. I say “try” because I threw a fit and would not pay it. They informed me that the tiny cup of rinse I’d been given was actually a $60 cup of rinse (they charge per quarter of the mouth, so if I’d just kept the swishing to the upper right quadrant, I’d have only been charged $15). They also informed me this happened every single time before (it hadn’t) but they have been charging me consistently wrong or something. In other words they were undercharging me for things they never even did to me. You would think this would make it an overcharge instead of an undercharge, but, according to my dental office, you would be sorely wrong. They laugh in the face of logic.
Fast-forward to Thursday (ah, yes, I should have seen that coming) afternoon when suddenly about six different stupid things happened to me in the space of about 2 hours.
It was the last day of my son’s soccer class. He takes these preschool soccer classes through the Parks and Rec Department around the corner from my house. We’ve been going there for, well, about 30 years now. But more recently for about 5 years now. The manager of the place used to know us well (when we were in there more often) and even greeted my kids by name one Christmas celebration when he was dressed as Santa. I’ve always liked him and so I am trying to give him the benefit of the doubt in this.
At the end of class, E’s teacher, R, handed out certificates to all the kids, but didn’t have one for E. He was really upset, but was trying to hold himself together as we promised him she’d go print him one. She went to ask the manager about it since he is the one who usually does that and the next thing I know the other teacher, J (who has always rubbed me the wrong way), informed me that my son wasn’t on the roster so I could bring them a receipt showing I’d paid for the class and THEN they would print him out a certificate.
WHAT? In other words – now that the eight-week class was completed and they never bothered to check to see if he was actually enrolled in the class – NOW they were going to take issue with it. Now that they had spent eight weeks teaching him and playing with him and giving him their time and letting him use their resources – NOW they were going to deny him one piece of paper because THEY had never bothered to make sure all was accounted for.
I informed J that if she told him no, she’d break his heart. We DID pay for the class, and it’s not my damn fault you didn’t keep track of what was going on. She went back to the manager after I showed off my mama bear.
Meanwhile, R, the other teacher, was apologizing and very sympathetic to all of us.
So Manager comes over and looks us up in the computer and informed us that we paid for Summer session, but not Fall. And I informed him that, actually, I had paid for both. He decided to go check on the backup system because, apparently, very very rarely something will fail to transfer correctly. Lo and behold there it was – our registration! All paid and proper and everything! Fancy that. So in the end my son got his certificate (spelled incorrectly) and as we left – swear to God – HE apologized to THEM for not having had his certificate. My sweet boy.
Why is it that I keep encountering these situations? It’s not just me, right? I am trying to be forgiving of the Rec Center because they are, after all, under severe budget problems and could literally be closed at any given quarter. But, really, if that’s the problem – should they not check at, say, the FIRST week of class to make sure everyone is enrolled properly? And then if there IS a mistake, can they really not afford the small cost of one printout for one little boy?
And there was, believe it or not, more stupid stuff. But I won’t go into it. Because I will begin to sound unbelievable.