Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Sad News and Angry Letter

As I'm sure most of you are aware (especially those on Facebook), we had to put our beloved Buddy to sleep. To make a very long story short, he was at least 15 years old (we never new for sure exactly how old) and diabetic. Toward the end, he stopped eating and drinking, and was so weak he could barely stand. We really did try everything we could (antibiotics, anti-inflammatories, testing his blood sugar) to give him (and us) as much time as possible. We finally had to let him go. It got to the point where it was not going to be fair to him any more. It was a difficult decision, and the first time either of us had to make that decision, but it had to be done. By the time we actually brought him to the vet, his condition had deteriorated to the point that neither of us had any doubt that we did the right thing. It was tough for us, but right for him. *sigh* Very sad.

Ok. That was the sad news. Now, the angry letter. An angry e-mail, actually. A while back, I had been noticing some delays in the turnaround of the movies on our Netflix queue. I went back & forth with Netflix customer service sending me non-responsive form letters that had nothing to do with my problem. Someone finally answered me personally, that Netflix was sorry, blah blah blah, if it happens again, let them know, more details, yadda yadda yadda. It happened occasionally after that, but for the most part was fine. Recently it has gotten worse again. So I did a little looking on my history and wrote back to them. Maybe you can tell me if this happens to you, too. When we return a movie, we put it in the mail, Netflix receives it the next day, then ships out the next movie later that same day, we receive it the following day. Three day cycle. One day each for shipping each way. What I have noticed is that during periods when we watch a lot of movies, suddenly, it takes two days for them to receive our returns. This month, we have returned eight movies (with a ninth on the way back). Our last four movies were mailed on two consecutive Mondays, but Netflix didn't show them as received until Wednesday, which means we didn't get the next movies until Thursday. This only seems to happen when we exceed about five movies in a month. What I suspect is that, when our frequency of return becomes to high, they will receive a movie, but hang on to it for a day before officially marking it as received. The more movies we can get out of them in a month, the more processing they must do and the more postage they have to pay. If they can slow us down a little, it saves them money. Maybe if we get fed up enough, we'll upgrade our membership and they can make even more money.

Hmm. Just thought of something else. I didn't think about until I was just writing this post. I'm sure they will say that they have no control over the Post Office, and it's probably just random delays. The one problem with that, which I did mention in the e-mail, is that the delays only occur when our frequency of rental increases. The other problem, which just occurred to me, is that the shipping delay never occurs when they ship us the movies. Only when we return them. That would be a pretty big coincidence...

Monday, August 10, 2009

Borrowed Time

Well, we got some bad news from the vet today. It's a pretty safe bet that our Buddy has an abdominal lymphoma. In other words, a cancerous tumor. It was a fairly emotional morning. Our vet, Dr. Shah, is really wonderful. I think he's really trying to get us to realize that it's not going to be much longer. There was some discussion as to whether we should put him to sleep today. The other options consisted of nothing (where he would waste away to nothing), Prednisone (which would have had too many side effects), Metacam (an anti-inflammatory, which would hopefully alleviate some discomfort or pain he may experience, and allow him some quality for what time he may have left). So we decided to go with the Metacam. We'll see how that does for him. We also got an antibiotic, since he seemed to be displaying some of the same symptoms he had before when he had a mouth infection. We hope that between the two medicines, he'll start to feel a little better and start eating better. When we can get him to eat, he seems to perk up quite a bit. The problem is getting him to eat. If all goes well, and everything works as we hope, we're still probably only looking at a couple of months. But for now, he's home, and he doesn't seem to be in any pain or discomfort.