----------------------------------------------- */ ----------------------------------------------- */ ----------------------------------------------- */ ----------------------------------------------- */ ----------------------------------------------- */ ----------------------------------------------- */ The Fabulous Adventures of Astera: Writer/Actress for Hire: One-Hour Photo is a Lie

The Fabulous Adventures of Astera: Writer/Actress for Hire

Meet Astera (aka: me), a star in her own mind. Our plucky little heroine has embarked on not one but two difficult, low-paying career paths: writing and acting. Witness the menial jobs! The unreasonable demands! The quirky friends and family! And the glimmer of success just ahead! Through it all, Astera maintains her core beliefs: 1) She is destined to be fabulous 2) Everything is more fun with a cocktail.

Tuesday, April 11, 2006

One-Hour Photo is a Lie

Am I the only one who didn't know this? Am I the only one who did not know that "one-hour photo" does not necessarily mean you get your photos back in one hour? At least, that's what the photo technicians at Longs Drugs are trying to tell me.

Last night, Mr. Pink was looking through some pictures on his computer, and I noticed a few really cute ones, including several from our honeymoon a year and a half ago. (As you can probably guess, I am not really a scrapbooking type of person. Thank God Mr. Pink takes pictures--otherwise we would have no photographic record of our lives. I usually forget to bring the camera, or when I do, the battery is dead.) Anyway, I asked him to put some pictures on a CD for me so that I could have them printed. We have a color printer, but we never have photo paper, so it just seems easier to let someone else do the work.

Normally, I get my photos printed at Costco, but Costco is usually a madhouse, and Longs is closer. Plus, in the Longs ad in the Sunday paper, it said, "Online Digital Pictures in an Hour--Done in 3 Easy Steps". Yes, with the italics and the bold and everything. I figured I could handle three easy stepss, and the prints were 19 cents each...not a bad deal.

This morning at 11:18, I navigated the Longs site and uploaded all of my photos. I printed out my receipt, which assured me that my photos would be ready for pickup at 12:18. But I didn't rush right out to get my photos. I had just gotten back from the gym, so I had to take a shower. Then I had to have some lunch. Then I had to do a bunch of other errands. Longs was my last stop. By the time I got there, it was 3:30. And guess what? My photos weren't ready!

"Why do you advertise it as 'one-hour photo' if the pictures aren't actually ready in an hour?" I asked. I got all manner of excuses. One woman said it was because the system was flawed and there was supposed to be a little alert that popped up on her screen to let her know about online orders, but the little alert wasn't working. Okay...well, did you ever think about just manually checking once in a while? Come on! Longs had four hours and 12 minutes to process my photos before I showed up! Well, the woman also claimed to be "really busy." I don't know how busy she could have been, because when I complained about my photos not being ready, she printed them out lickety-split, in like 10 minutes.

Another woman came by, a manager type, since she saw me propping up the photo counter. I asked her why Longs advertised its service as "one-hour photo" when the photos aren't done in an hour. She told me that all one-hour photo means is that your pictures are being developed in the store instead of in the remote lab, which takes two days. She said it's really more like "same- day service." Okay, well it's not called "same-day service," is it? It's not called, "in-store, not in the remote lab" service. It's not even called, "whenever we get around to developing your photos" service. It's called "one-hour photo"! Don't call it something it's not! Can we get a little truth in advertising here, or do I have to file a class-action lawsuit? I have venerable legal counsel (two of them!) in my immediate family.

This manager-type woman assuaged my outrage somewhat by giving me my pictures for free, so I saved $11. But still. I thought it was called "one-hour photo" for a reason.


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