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Eight initials

Let’s see … beer tasting tonight. You should sign up for next week or the week after. Tomorrow night will be spent carefully crafting 5+ gallons of the Puncher ’07. Saturday is Le Chomp and Stomp. And on Sunday, he will rest. For as long as the cats will let him.

Speaking of beer tastings and chili cookoffs, lets talk about renting cars. When I travel for work I rent from National 97% of the time. My company has a deal with them where we get great rates and we’re all members of their Emerald Club, which has little tangible value save one very important detail. Here’s how it usually works:

1. Arrive at destination
2. Walk onto National lot
3. Select a vehicle
4. Drive away

I flash my credit card and ID on the way out and that’s that. It’s a system that, until last week, I took entirely for granted. For the otherwise effortless trip to Miami last week, my boss and I were traveling together and I reserved the car. I waited a little late to make the reservation (because that’s how I roll), and National was out of cars. The next cheapest option was Avis, so, before departing, I signed up for an account with them, uploaded all of my info / preferences, and reserved a car. Upon arriving at their lot, however, I was instructed to go wait in line at the counter like some sort of mouth-breathing schmuck. It was so degrading, I think I have Bell’s Palsy.

I won’t bore you with the step-by-step of renting a car at the counter because, as you can surely guess, it is needlessly complicated and infuriatingly time-consuming. The agent required two ways to get in touch with me via telephone. I gave her my cell and, determined to push back on their absurd processes, simply shrugged, “That’s the only way to get in touch with me.” She asked me which hotel I was staying in and, struggling to resist screeching NONE OF YOUR MAHFUCKIN BIDNESS, I simply told her the name and shrugged again. I like to call this process Making Friends By Being Helpful. It was like a 15 minute long SNL skit. Actual quote from her: “Okay, so initial here, here, these three spots, here, here, and here. And sign here. Eight initials and a signature.”

National has no information about me that Avis doesn’t have, yet National trusts me enough to not put me through a Gauntlet of Retards before letting me leave with a vehicle. I don’t understand. I told my boss the next time National is out of cars, I am canceling the trip and quitting my job.

Also speaking of cars, we bought Gia a new one yesterday. I’ll save the bragging about my wicked negotiating skillz for a subsequent entry.

  1. want to see the car. make a picture please. with the lady in ‘der somewhere’s, if possible.

  2. hey, how did you do in the chili competition? i was too wasted by the end to make note of the winners. also too wasted to remember the recipe you showed me, lol. shoulda taken a pic with my camera phone, all james bond-like ;)

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