Thursday, March 08, 2007

Film Baby

The people responsible for CD Baby have branched out into video with Film Baby, and I'm happy to see that they haven't changed their customer service policies.

Here's the confirmation email for my order:
You have chosen to risk life and limb to order the Ask A Ninja Volume 1 DVD. You have earned Film Baby's eternal respect for your obvious bravery.

A messenger just tip-toe'd over to the Ninja's office and whispered to him in his sweetest voice that you'd REALLY like one of his DVDs. He said to tell you that he'll send it to you, and he looks forward to killing you soon. And then he killed the messenger.

Provided the Ninja doesn't kill US first, we'll ship your DVD right away. We'll send you another email to WARN you that a NINJA is on its way to your house....

And the shipping notification:
We have good news and bad news. The good news is that your order of Ask A Ninja Vol 1. DVD was shipped out today. The bad news is that there is also a real, live Ninja on his way to your house. Use extreme caution when opening your mailbox in the next few days. Just before we sealed the box, our packing master thought he heard a whisper saying "I am looking forward to killing CKL soon". We can't be sure. It was either that or "what the hell... why are you stuffing me in the in this..." and the rest was muffled.

Please rest assured that we've taken great care in the shipping of your DVD. We hold true to an ancient DVD shipping tradition passed down for over 5000 years. This very intensive practice is only achieved after years of training, meditation, and purity of mind, and sadly' some accidental killings (we're looking for a new intern, if you know anyone...). After a rigorous 17 step process of verifying the authenticity of your DVD, we donned silk gloves and placed it into a sacred box made of magic and lined with Unicorn fur, tied the box with a strand of Gypsy hair, and wrapped the whole thing in a snazzy looking faux gold leaf paper, with elm leaf inlay from Costco. Unfortunately, by the time it gets to you, all of that fancy stuff will likely have been picked clean by the greedy postal service employees. Please don't be surprised to see just a plain cardboard box.

Oh yeah, did I mention that Ask a Ninja is out on DVD? Because it is. And that's cool too.

I really wish that CD Baby and Film Baby had larger catalogs, because I actively want to buy stuff from them. Sure, Amazon.com is convenient, and the free two-day shipping with Amazon Prime is nice, but I feel no loyalty toward them. If they have something I'm looking for, and it's cheaper than I can find it elsewhere (which it often is), I'll buy it, but my motivation is purely mercenary.

I don't enjoy browsing or searching on Amazon, because both features suck. Every once in a while I'll find an interesting, user-created list, but the gift guides are worthless, and what do you mean I can't refine my search by price or seller? I'm not going to waste my time paging through bad content posted by third-party sellers. That's not why I buy from Amazon; I want complete product information, including photos, so I know what I'm getting. And I want my free shipping, dammit, since I've already paid my $80 for the year, and the service is worthless if I can't use it.

Anyway. I wish Amazon would stop trying to be eBay, because they're really not very good at it. And speaking of eBay, I still don't understand this new Express thing, and their explanation doesn't help at all. Seriously, don't make me do extra work to decide whether or not to give you my money. Because I won't waste my time.

~CKL
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