chaos and the Bug letter

The post title comes from a cherished urban legend: distinguished college professor opens bottle of his favorite soda on a hot day, gulps it down, is revolted to find a Large Insect still swimming at the bottom of the bottle, and writes in sorrow and anger to the president of the beverage company. Several weeks later, he receives a reply, opens the envelope, finds his original letter and scrawled across the top of the page are the words "Send this creep the Bug letter."

So here is a link to a story from The Cut, which is a fashion- and trend-centered blog belonging to New York Magazine. In brief, Delia Ephron, a writer known for having given us delightful essays, movies, books, placed an order with J.Crew, an online merchandiser known for holding itself out as your fashion-forward friend who's a little pricey but who really really cares about you. Cares, as expressed in this missive:
Chaos followed the placement of the order. Ms. Ephron did what writers do when there is chaos in their lives: she wrote about it. Because her writing is witty and charming, her experience wound up on the Op-Ed page of the New York Times, where a lot of people noticed it and no doubt said to themselves "That's NOTHING! They sent me ..."

You can read her essay at deliaephronwriter.com. You can find J.Crew-related shipping and delivery stories every Wednesday at jcrewaficionada.

One of the people who read Ms. Ephron's essay and was not amused was Millard S. Drexler, who took his exclusive handmade-in-the-mountains-of-Switzerland pen in hand and responded, also in the pages of the New York Times. OK, this is where you follow the link:

Mickey Drexler Sincerely Sorry That Delia Ephron Thinks Online Shopping Is ‘Hell’ - The Cut
Mr. Drexler seems a touch annoyed that a writer wrote about her experience with his company. I think he's lucky that order wasn't placed by an international arms dealer.

Oh, and by the way, you think this is a frivolous waste of time? I'm posting from New York City, not from Washington D.C., where they really know how to do frivolous wastes of time.

17 comments:

  1. Hi Fred,

    Read all these shenanigans earlier in week and got quite a chuckle. Mickey doth protest too much. The classier thing would be to say:

    You know what? Delia is right. We can do better. While I wish she had of written to me directly instead of the whole world via the New York Times, the customer is always right and we will take this critique in the spirit in which it was given and will do better.

    Of course, that is not what he did. Sigh... Mickey forgot the cardinal rule of snotty letter writing - sleep on it for 24 hours and then show it to a completely unbiased friend!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. The people at The Cut think he read it at the office over the PA system.

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    2. Bahahahahahaha! Good one, WFF!

      Delete
  2. Drexler, unfortunately, believes his own hype.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. yes, fervidly, devoutly, and now there is a $14,000,000 shrine around the corner from the office.

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  3. Had to LOL at his frothing-at-the-mouth use of "defamation." First, you should never throw words like that around to people who buy ink buy the barrel . . . or used to, anyway. Second, every first-year law student learns that truth is a complete defense.

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    Replies
    1. and even if the essay is a little hyperbolic - which I doubt - the New York Times would be the first to point out that Mickey D has thrust himself into the public eye, repeatedly and expensively.

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  4. I think we can all share in the frustration of botched orders.

    I enjoyed her article. Could this be the tipping point where the tide turns and the press is no longer strictly fawning over Mickey et al? As my husband would say, a comeuppance might do them a world of good.

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  5. I think we might see some fast back-pedaling, tactfully placed by an already overworked PR staff.

    ReplyDelete
  6. Of course he read it over the PA system. He has a captive and paid audience.
    'I think he's lucky the order wasn't placed by an international arms dealer.' Again the computer monitor has a slurp of latte. LOL.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. yes, many of us fail to recognize when we are blessed.

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  7. Happy New Year Fred-Oh, how I have enjoyed reading your blog(and responses), so grand of Mic to give such a fine subject to end on. Is his middle initial H? If so, must stand for Highlyinsufferable. Cheers to you and yours with wishes for a happy, healthy and hilarity-infused year ahead.

    ReplyDelete
  8. Happy New Year, David, and my very best wishes to everyone in your house tonight as well! And here's hoping we'll all be smiling this time next year...

    ReplyDelete
  9. Yep, right on point, "That's NOTHING! They sent me ..." and more than once or twice.

    Happy new year, WFF! Best wishes for more laughter in 2013!

    ReplyDelete
  10. Thaanks, tiffany rose, and Happy New Year!

    ReplyDelete

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