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Smarterer – Another BzzAgent Post

 

I’ve been involved further with BzzAgent. The most recent campaign I was invited to was for Smarterer. From their website:

We created Smarterer to provide people a simple, fun, and authentic way to show what they know. Smarterer is a platform designed to score individuals on any and every digital, social, and technical skill under the sun. Using crowdsourced test design and a scoring mechanism similar to the one developed to rank chess masters, in just 10 questions and 60 seconds we can give you a valid score.

 

So far, it is pretty neat. I am ranked 7th with regards to the BzzAgent test. :D

BzzAgent

 

So I have enrolled in a free program through BzzAgent.com. Honestly, it sounds too good to be true. They did not require anything like credit card or Paypal information, though, so I signed up. The ultimate goal of the site/program is to send products out to users to sample and try out so that they then review the products. It is kinda like free marketing.

Users complete surveys about their lifestyles and the products they use so that BzzAgent can tailor what products they send (or Campaigns, as they call them) to the users to review. There’s no obligation except that you take the time to review the products you receive. They also want their users (they call them Agents) to openly disclose their status as an Agent – there is no pressure to provide glowing reviews on products that SUCK, either, which is nice.

The downside is that it takes a while to be invited to your first campaign after joining. I joined in August but did not receive a Campaign invite until earlier this month. I had actually forgotten that I joined it until I got an email from them about the invite!

My first campaign was to review some products from Maybelline…their new Great Lash Lots of Lashes mascara and their new Baby Lips Repairing Lip Balm. They didn’t just send me a tiny sample size of each, either. Nope. FIVE full-sized tubes of mascara and four full-size lip balms.

I’m not normally a fan of black mascara because it makes me look scary, but the applicator wand was such that it was not a thick or clumpy application, so it did not look too dramatic. It is not waterproof. Downside is that it smudges VERY easily (unlike whichever Almay I use). The brush looks a little goofy, it is tapered–thicker towards the handle and thinner towards the tip so you can more easily get to inner lashes and whatnot.

I am a lip balm junkie, though. They’re all SPF 20. Two were tinted – Cherry Me and Pink Punch. The Cherry Me looks nice but Pink Punch looks a little too much like the bright, way-too-opaque pink lipstick you see on Barbie dolls; not my thing. The others were clear – Quenched and Peppermint. Quenched claimed to be unscented, but it had a pleasant scent that reminded me of citrus and well, the other is pretty obvious. All four smell great but taste AWFUL, so keep that in mind if you accidentally lick your lips with the stuff on!

Uhh…

Yeah, so…haven’t posted here in a bit.

Deleted a bunch of shit.

Since I last posted (in chronological order, or as best as I can remember):

  1. Got a promotion to a full-time department lead/coordinator.
  2. Moved into the apartment.
  3. Got my first credit card.
  4. Got kittens.
  5. Third anniversary.
  6. Purchased the Plymouth Sundance (car) from his parents that we had been borrowing.
  7. Turned 19.
  8. Parents visited; they were playing gypsy.
  9. Otakon.
  10. Got fed up with Best Buy due to the insane GM; decided to look for a new job.
  11. Got a job with a security company within 3 days. Started the following Monday.
    … Call center. Better pay. Insurance. Benefits. Paid time off. Consistency!
    … … (Did not quit BBY until the following Sunday; got shifts covered, called off to use my sick time, worked weekend &…bye!)
  12. Thanksgiving.
  13. Worked my ass off, worked overtime.
  14. Christmas; my parents came to visit. It was partially a fiasco, as per usual.
  15. More overtime.
  16. Got the kittens fixed.
  17. Tax time.
  18. Head gasket on the car we had bought from his parents went. Cost to fix > value of car.
    … Rented a car for 3wks while we struggled to find a decent car & loan. Lenders were concerned about phixious’ and my credit history.
    … … Neither of us have any bad marks, but being young, we don’t have a long credit history.
  19. My parents decided to move to PA. They lived with us (…we have a one bedroom/efficiency apt. Separate bedroom, but living/kitchen/dining is one space) for about 2mo.
    … So that was phix, myself, our two cats, my mom, dad, and sister and their three cats. >_<
  20. Finally got someone to give us a loan! We purchased a 2004 Jaguar X-Type for $10,143 (including taxes, title & other fees) w\ $2k of it down.
    (Yeeeeeah. Heated. Fuckin’. Seats!)
  21. Fourth anniversary!
  22. One of my parents’ cats (I take that back–MY cat, but she lives with them, Washu!) had a kitten! Aw! =)
  23. My parents got their own house. Finally!
  24. phix’s birthday!
  25. Went to Tennessee for phix’s cousin’s wedding. It was a nice ceremony and we have ridiculous pictures in Batman masks and I was drunk as hell.
  26. Indoor water park! phix hurt his foot on a slide, but they patched him up & we had fun!
    … despite our friends being stupid and not wanting to ride anything because they were being self-conscious because they’re hefty folks.
  27. Saw a drive-inĀ  movie for the first time.
  28. Turned 20.
  29. Washu had MOAR kittens! They all made it this time which is very exciting and wonderful because, you know, KITTENS. (squee).
  30. One year with my security company job. Raise!
  31. Saw mc chris in concert and it was SO. FUCKING. FUN. :D!
  32. Promotion! Raise TBD!

 

and here we are!

Customers, II

  • (After going through the pitch with a nice Print/Scan/Copy/Fax that weighs about as much as I do and retrieving it from the top level on a not-so-sturdy ladder, lugging it to the front of the store…upon asking if she needed a USB cable for it…) “But that doesn’t fit in my computer.” “Yes it does, I sold you your computer…it is this one, here. It goes here.” “No it doesn’t, it doesn’t fit.” (Demonstrating its fitting) “…Oh, THAT end goes in the computer? I had it backwards. I don’t need this printer, then.” (Facepalming, walking away to restock the printer, silently, she follows me…) “Well I’m SORRY. I just spent so much time going back and forth with it, I thought…” “You should have spent more time in preschool learning your shapes.”
  • “My monitor gave me a virus!”
  • “What do you mean I got a virus? I have Norton/McAfee!”
  • “You know the computer from the ad?” “Uh…we have like twelve. Can you be more specific?”
  • “There are all these people standing around!” “They are cashiers. They don’t have anyone to ring out…nor do they have any knowledge or experience to help you with what you need…”
  • “Do you have the iPad yet?”
  • (After passing the sign that clearly states, “No Animals EXCEPT Service Animals Permitted, Thank You,”) “Why am I getting all these dirty looks? It’s JUST a dog. Sheesh! What, do you people hate animals? What’s your problem?” “No one here hates animals, however we have a clearly stated policy; some employees and customers have animal allergies…and just because you think he is a fashion accessory does not mean he should be around MILLIONS of dollars of electronics.”
  • “I need a cable to take my laptop to my TV.” “Sure, what connectors does your TV have?” “What?” (Sweatdrop) “What type of inputs are in the back of your TV?/How old is it/What brand is it?” “Don’t know/Newer/Don’t know.” “Newer to me and newer to you are probably two VERY different time frames.” “Three years?” “Old. But I need to know those things first…” (Irritated that I don’t have ESP for electronics and don’t just know, he continues to argue) “I didn’t know there were different connectors, that’s stupid.” “Sir…Even not knowing, it isn’t stupid. Technology changes. That’s like saying the fact that Ford has a Taurus now in contrast to a Model T is ridiculous….”
  • “You’re gonna give me a good deal, right?” “Everything is priced as marked.” “But YOU’re gonna give me a deal, right?” “I have no power over the prices. I can and will not change them. I’m not commissioned, so I don’t get any more or less if you buy this or not.” “…I don’t believe you.” “That’s fine; it doesn’t change my paycheck. Think what you like, I won’t bend backwards to change your mind.”

Now, don’t get me wrong. I do enjoy a pleasant interaction. It is nice to see people happily leaving my store with the things they need to get up and running, not feeling as if they have been pressured and/or mislead. I like to see/hear return customers ask for me by name. I can say that I have never lied to a customer to get them to buy something…after all, I am not commissioned. The only thing I get out of my job aside from my hourly wage is a POSSIBLE bonus if my entire store hits over 103% profit margin…so yes, I want us to be profitable, but not badly enough to mislead people. On that same note, I’m not bothered if people think I’m full of shit when I lay out our non-commissioned statement because, I mean, why get mad over it? Their mind is made up, it isn’t like I could change it, and even if I could, it isn’t like it would do anything for me.
Going non-commissioned is something a handful of people think was a mistake for Best Buy because of the fact that many of their salespeople are like, “Fuck it, I don’t get anything out of this, so why bother?” In my opinion, that’s a bad attitude, because you do get a paycheck. My thoughts are that since Best Buy decided to remove the commissioned part of their sales is that they should have raised the average hourly rate…but of course that’s asking too much.

Oh, and I might be a supervisor of my department, soon. Hah.

Customers

This is just a list of some of the things I encounter. I’m not even going to comment on them because I don’t have to.

  • “How do I turn this on?”
  • “I thought computer viruses were biological, like other ones.”
  • “+Points to a computer (just the tower).+ I need to buy this internet.”
  • (From someone claiming to have their CCNA) “Will a Kodak printer work with an HP computer?”
  • “What do you mean these don’t have built-in floppy disc drives? That’s ridiculous. What about all my programs?”
  • “I need memory for a computer.” “What kind?” “…what? Memory.” “Yeah…um, do you know the model number of your PC?” “It’s just memory, it’s all the same, isn’t it?”
  • “+Approaches with MagicJack+ This gets me internet wherever I want, right?”
  • “Why won’t this laptop fit?” “That’s a 17.3″ laptop…?” “Yep.” “…that’s a 15.6″ bag.”
  • “I bought this netbook and it won’t play Eve Online…”
  • “You guys got printer ink?” “Yep, what kind do you need?” “I don’t know.” “What kind of printer do you have?” “I don’t know.”
  • (Over the phone) “I need prices on hard drives.” “What size?” “I dunno, decent sized.” “500GB for $X, we have 640 for $Y…” “That cheap? I thought I’d be out 600 for that big thing.” “Hard drives are fairly small, sir, do you mean the whole computer?” “Yeah, the hard drive!”
  • “Which one of these cameras has zoom?”
  • “I want a really fast laptop with a lot of storage and a 17″ display…for under $500.” (Yeah, don’t we all?)
  • “I want this.” “I’m sorry, we’re sold out. We’ll get more; I can try another store.” “Why don’t you have it?” “It is a very popular product and we recently sold out, I’m sorry about that.” “But it’s in the ad.” “Yes ma’am, I understand…and we sold out.” “But it was in the ad, you should have it. This is bullshit.” “Ma’am, our ad comes out on Sunday…it is now Thursday; many people in this area saw and we sold out. We can give you a rain-check or hold one for you when it comes in.” “BUT YOU SHOULD HAVE IT CUZ THE AD SAYS.”
  • “I hate this brand of computer, so I don’t want one?” “Bad experience with them?” “They’re just bad.” (“I know nothing about computers and that isn’t a name I remember because I’m senile.”)
  • (Over the phone) “How many gigabytes do the cameras have?”
  • “How do I make my dial-up do wireless?
  • “I want one of those little notebooks.” (I take them to a 14.1 inch notebook/laptop.) “No no, one of the tiny things. Not a laptop.” “They mean the same thing. Netbooks are the little ones, here.” “That’s what I said, ‘notebook.'”
  • (Thirty feet from the HUGE sign that says, “Car Electronics,” instead, near digital cameras.) “Where are your GPS systems?” “…Is that a car electronic?” “Yes..?” “+Points.+”
  • “I need a replacement cord (power supply!) for my laptop. +Sees cost.+ Why are they so expensive?” “You aren’t just buying a computer when you buy a laptop…”
  • “Where are your Kindles located?”
  • “I need an adapter for my iPod.” “Okay, here you go.” “That’s what they gave me last time and it didn’t fit.” “Which iPod do you have?” “+Points to a Sony Walkman mp3 player.+”
  • “I bought this here PC the other day…where do my speakers plug in?” “The mint-green 3.5mm port on the back.” “My (USB) mouse is plugged in there.” “It is not.”
  • “I can’t put multiple discs in one drive at once? Oops.”
  • “My phone line (RJ11) sits in the Ethernet (RJ45) port but I can’t get online.”
  • “How can LG make monitors? They don’t make computers, right?”

…sigh.

Color-Coding

Phix is configuring some server setup he’s got at his house. He’s got both his main machine and the server hooked into his monitor so he can do normal stuff while waiting for certain processes to complete on the server. He’s got separate input devices for each, though, and he keeps mixing them up depending on what he’s doing–either wrong devices for what he’s looking at or a mixture; musing:

“There’s a white keyboard and there’s a black keyboard.
There’s a black mouse and there’s a white mouse.
The white mouse and white keyboard go together
And the black keyboard and black mouse go together.
What the FUCK don’t I get about that?”

I adore him. xD

Quadruple Navel Piercing

I’ve got a friend, Rachel [another Rachel, not the one previously mentioned] who lives about fifty miles south of me. Needless to say, I don’t get to see her that much [hopefully that shall change now that we’re done with school and all] but we correspond over–go figure–the internets.

Since she’s turned eighteen, she’s run out and gotten all these piercings, and a tattoo, with plans for more… I think she rushed into some of these, and I wasn’t entirely wrong; she got a Monroe [small stud through the skin above the lip and below the nose, offset a little, which supposedly emulates Marilyn Monroe’s beauty mark] and hastily got rid of it, deciding it was, “stupid.”

She hops online yesterday and bombards me with excited messages that she underwent the needle again. “I got my bellybutton pierced,” she expostulates. I commented that I was surprised she didn’t have it done prior.
“Oh, but it isn’t normal,” she confides.”
“What’s different, then?”
“It isn’t just one.”
“…what?”
“Yeah, I got it pierced four times.”
“Did they mess up or something?”
“No, I got a hole in the top, bottom, and in each side.”
“…that’s bizarre, I’ve never seen that.”
“Me either, that’s why I got it done!”

So Rach then sends me a picture, thusly:

In the top is a normal, navel-style jewelled, likely surgical steel, curved barbell [14g] and in the bottom and sides are just plain surgical steel curved–albeit shorter–barbells, also 14 gauge.

…WTFZOMG I LOVE IT.

My mom saw and she’s pretty grossed out by it [I said I’d like to have that done…xD] and phixious doesn’t like it; aw.
Regardless, I’m considering it, just for the hell of it. After all, I enjoyed–oddly–getting my first one done, so hey, why not? Fortunately I’d only have to get three of the four at once and..yeah. However, cleaning it would likely be a bitch, and I’d be intensely terrified of them snagging on each other..