GOING WELLNUTS

The Humor Blog for Well-Being

July 23, 2018

Artificial Intelligence: Pros and Cons

In this country, one third of the population is worried about losing their jobs to the likes of Siri, Alexa or Watson. Another third is hoping to find solutions to their problems in the likes of Siri, Alexa, or Watson. The remaining third is going to be indicted by Robert Mueller. I belong to the second group, the hopeful bunch. I’m counting on computers to prevent me from making any more catastrophic decisions, such as buying a house in Coral Gables, where eight municipal inspectors must approve the color of your toilet paper — four before you use it, and four after. I’m also hoping computers will persuade my wife that I’m right most of the time, especially when it comes to real estate decisions in South Florida. I imagine an app where I can compare two houses, my wife’s choice and mine. We would input the address of the two houses, divided by the price of renovations, multiplied by the number of times contractors don’t show up on time, minus the cost of bribes, I mean permits. The algorithm would then produce a profile of our mental health ten years hence. Then, accounting for the cost of psychiatric care, […]
May 3, 2018

What would the Dalai Lama do?

  The table was set for eight, but on the first night only six people showed up: the farmer and the cheerleader (husband and wife); the grandma and the alcoholic (sisters); and the group facilitator with her judgmental husband (me). The two empty chairs caused consternation among the six of us. Had the missing couple gone by our table and refused to sit with us? Had they rejected us before they even met us? We were relieved to learn that our paranoia was unfounded. As it happened, the party animal and her husband the foodie missed the first dinner because they ate at a more exclusive restaurant. They did join us for the remaining three nights of the cruise though. And every dinner they regaled us with stories of delicacies, drinking, and dancing. Despite my reclusive proclivities, I was fully prepared to socialize with six strangers for four consecutive dinners. I came ready with open ended questions, approving nods, and a curious attitude. I’m sure all six of them were very interesting people, with exotic backgrounds and unique life stories, but there was one problem: they were as communicative as the silverware. Ora, my wife, assumed the role of group […]
April 22, 2018

Customer Disservice Awards: Third Place

  The third place goes to the nurse who performed my MRI last year. I had a positional headache that triggered my brain hypochondria. I valiantly overcame claustrophobic fears and behaved like a grownup during the procedure. I rehearsed for days a desensitization program: I would close my eyes and keep them shut until I was out of the electromagnetic tomb. I did it without crying or freaking out. I was so proud of myself that I nearly forgot to ask about the results of the MRI. While waiting for the nurse to release me I saw that she handed to another patient a disk with her results. I asked if I could also take mine with me. She agreed. I also asked if she could share with me the findings, but told me that I can actually look at them on the computer. The fact that she did not answer my question, but still gave me the disk, was confusing. Would she had given me the results if I had a tumor? And if I did not have a tumor, why would she not tell me? When I asked her how to read the results, she told me that […]
April 15, 2018

Customer Disservice Awards: Second Place

The second place for customer disservice goes to the flight attendant from Lufthansa. We were about to board the business class section of the Airbus when a Lufthansa employee turned to the flight attendant to ask her for help with our bags. She asked the flight attendant for assistance while I helped Ora to her seat. I turned to the flight attendant and politely asked her to place two small bags in 24E and F while I assisted my wife. Since she did not acknowledge my request, I assumed that she could not hear me because of the noise of the engines. I courteously repeated the seat numbers, at which point she yelled at me, in the rudest of terms, “I HEARD YOU SIR.” Apparently she felt that it was beneath her to help passengers with their bags. I had seen such attitude before. A few minutes later the same flight attendant handed us the oxygen tank that Ora uses in long flights. As two Jewish passengers in the hands of a nasty German wearing a uniform, we could not help but laugh at the fact that she was handing us a tank that seem to contain gas. I hasten […]
April 8, 2018

Customer Disservice Awards: First Place

  Drum roll maestro. The envelope please. And the prize for the least caring and most incompetent professional goes to….the wedding planner. Our student was to get married on a beautiful island in the Caribbean, and my wife and I were invited. The bride put us in touch with her wedding planner to learn about the most accessible route to get to the island, since Ora, my wife, uses a wheelchair. We had two options: either fly to the neighboring island and take a small plane to our destination, or cross from the big island to the small one on a ferry. We explained to her that it is challenging for a person with a disability to maneuver access to small planes and get into ferries without proper ramps. Since the wedding planner lived on the island, we figured we could trust her. Without hesitation she recommended that we fly to St. Martin and then we take the ferry to the island. Her ineptitude revealed one of two things: She either never took the ferry, or never saw a wheelchair. Third option: She never gave a darn. To get to the ferry, Ora and I had to take an inaccessible […]

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