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Rant about walmart.com

July 8, 2010 Leave a comment

I ordered a new toy for myself.  A Jawbone Icon Bluetooth headset.  I justified the purchase by telling myself that it will make my commute safer when I had to return pages while driving.  I found the model and price I wanted from walmart.com.  Order came in 2 days.  Everything was great until my order shipped.  Headset shipped with only bubble wrap.  No fancy box, no extra earpiece for better fit, no warranty info and only part of the instructions.  The headset itself was chipped, scuffed, and had something that looked like earwax on it.  Ya, I know, gross.  I cleaned the earpiece off until it was pristine.  I even contemplated using an alcohol swab on it but didn’t want to use chemicals on it if I might return it.  When I tried the earpiece, it didn’t fit.  Without extra earpieces for better fit, I was screwed.  Drove to my local Walmart while cussing about such poor customer service.  Thankfully, brick and mortar Walmart was more responsible than walmart.com.  They let me return the order and even paid my shipping!  Kudos to brick and mortar Walmart, boo to walmart.com.  Expect an angry letter from me soon.

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Categories: Uncategorized

Thoughts from Toronto

April 24, 2010 Leave a comment

Toronto has an extraordinary clean city. There some panhandler but not much compared to the size of the city. The city is beautiful; the people are pleasant. There are a lot of variety of food. Food is fair to very good. I did not encounter any excellent food though. Maybe I just didn’t go to the right place. Everything was expensive though. From bottle water to baseball caps. The conversion rate from USD to Canadian didn’t help either. Like San Francisco, Toronto is a good place to visit but I’m not sure I’d want to live there.

Categories: Uncategorized

More is Less

January 2, 2010 1 comment

Where is more less?  Health care, that’s where.  For the average consumer, less is best.  The US model of health care is more is better, has been for decades.  This has led to our bloated, expensive but ineffective health care system where the major players work to keep the status quo.  Think about how expensive health care is in the US.  Does it really make sense that insurance and pharmaceutical companies make more money than hospitals, clinics, and health care providers?  There has been a lot of debate on health care reform this year.  And while both sides have legitimate points, I would go further by saying health care reforms has to start at home.  We have to think carefully about how we want to consume health care.  If your child has a fever, do they always need antibiotics and chest x-ray?  Do you think about the risk associated with them?  Antibiotic resistant MRSA (methicillin resistant staph aureus) or Clostrium Difficile colitis from antibiotic overuse, and leukemias and skin cancer with radiation exposure.  Now the cancer risk is very low, but radiation doses are cumulative.

Look to examples overseas like in Norway where they achieved dramatic reduction in MRSA infections http://bit.ly/4M0qfu.  Another study published in JAMA (Journal of the American Medical Association) in 2006 http://bit.ly/63gwIV showed that Wait and See Prescription method was equally effective in treating ear infections in children with substantially less antibiotic use.  The point to all of this is more is not necessarily better.  We need to embrace this paradigm one person at a time and realize that health care reform starts with us.

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