Archive for July, 2011

I think they meant to put this sign by the white wine (my liquid courage of choice).

Electronic music, The Wizard of Oz, and things that take less than 5 minutes.

As posted on Yelp: Strap a toothbrush to the hoof of a mountain goat and let it kick you in the face repeatedly. You will get about the same experience and quality of care as you will at Willamette Dental, and it will be cheaper.

This is one of the worst health care experiences I’ve had in the Seattle area. I started going to the office on Dexter because it was one of the few providers covered by my insurance that I could get to on foot. When I changed jobs, I decided to start using their Northgate office, mistakenly thinking it would be a smooth transition.

Not so. I might as well have just gone with an entirely new provider since they started from scratch as if I were a new patient (which means extra fees for exams I didn’t need yet). In Willa World, having multiple locations does not mean added convenience.

This location in particular is awful. It is situated near I-5, which you’d think would be convenient. However, you have to make a left and then a U-turn on two perpetually congested streets just to reach the building. And when you do, their narrow, small, second-floor parking lot is almost always full. Because it’s so small, cars often park over the line, occupying every other space, so you have to park at the other building’s parking garage, which is across and down the street. And heaven help you if you’re late because of this–the receptionist will remind you!

The last time I was there, a transient had taken up residence in one of the seating areas in the lobby. He smelled horrendous and laid across a row of seats as if he were wasted.

Even if you dismiss the labyrinth-like hellpit for your average car-trip in Seattle, the care is atrocious. I went to have a tooth filled, and after the dentist had put the anesthetic in my mouth, he started asking me questions about what composite he was supposed to use and what color. I had gotten a letter of predetermination from my insurance company for this procedure because I didn’t want there to be any surprises. I had been improperly billed before and I wanted to make sure everyone knew what we were doing and what it would cost beforehand. Apparently, this pre-emptive legwork was for nothing.

Then I went back because I had cracked a filling. I chose a different dentist, hoping he would be more on top of things than the last one. Although he was able to perform the repairs needed, he gave me too many shots of anesthetic, which left a GIANT BRUISE on my face for weeks. When I called their office to tell them what happened, they didn’t care at all. I offered to send them a picture (it was a big bruise!) but they wouldn’t look at it. They wanted me to waste another afternoon driving to their roiling cesspool so the dentist could look at it and tell me to wait a few weeks for it to go away.

What’s worse, they don’t know how to file an insurance claim, so I’m paying through the nose for this terrible treatment. I tried to discuss it with their office manager to no avail, and she said she didn’t have the authority to do anything (or even talk to anyone about it) and that I had to call her superiors myself. Not wanting to leak her incompetence, it was a non-working number. I’ve gotten better customer service from call centers in India.

Unless you are a glutton for punishment, do not use this provider. Stick with the mountain goat and thank your stars when you narrowly miss being mauled to death.

I wanted to share this, but I don’t know where to put it.

And to think I wanted work to buy me a Droid instead!

Had I received one, I wonder which 1.7 guys would be missing out on hot Kat-action. But seriously, I’m willing to bet women who are more subjectable to Apple’s slick marketing are the same women who are more subjectable to the Ed Hardy-wearin’, hair-gellin’, iPhone-totin’ bros in the club. (After all, they’re supposely getting laid more too.)


The seahorse exhibit has some distant cousins visiting for the summer: three alligator pipefish. (Yes, the link from the Shedd Aquarium was more informative and had better pictures than the Wikipedia article. Their amazingly full collection of sea life is one of Chicago’s few saving graces.) Not surprisingly, these fish look like a cross between a seahorse and legless alligator. They have prehensile tails and eat the same stuff seahorses do. Welcome, alligator pipefish!

Now that it’s summer, the aquarium is jam-packed with strollers, hyperactive kids, screaming, crying, etc. I went out to the pier to get some air and an elderly lady approached me.

She: “Can I ask you a question!”

Me: “Sure!”

She: “I was interested your volunteer program. There are so many nice volunteers here and it’s just wonderful!”

Me: “Thanks! It’s a great program. We have a pool of about 700 total, and that includes regular shift volunteers, life sciences, beach naturalists, program leaders, and teen volunteers.”

She: “So do you think you’ll pursue marine biology after this?”

Me: “Well, I’m 30, and I’ve been working in the technical field for the last 10 years, so I’m pretty sure I’ll stick with that.”

She: “I thought you were a teen volunteer!”

Some slightly uncomfortable laughter and many looks of shock on both our parts were exchanged. I thought the youngins are supposed to flatter the old ladies, not the other way around. Then, like the mature adult that I am, I went inside and had a teen volunteer paint a seahorse on me:

I am the toughest mermaid under the sea!!!

Before I mock its poor translation, I must openly admit that I love this site. I want to buy every single Lolita dress and have a half dozen in my shopping cart so far. When I was about to drop $400 for costume dresses that can’t be worn anywhere but those parties I’m often too tired to go to, the site when down for a few minutes and I was visibly upset. I must release my inner girlie girl and this site will be the key! I am going to be the cutest old woman on the block!

Now onto the mocking:

My small sex appeal thanks this site for its presence.