Mr Richard Goyder,
The Managing Director
40 The Esplanade
30th November 2014
I am writing to complain about the behaviour of some of the customers of your Coles store in Noosa Junction, Noosa Heads. There is a certain element amongst them that does not have any regard for other people’s property. They will park their cars in an untidy manner and finding insufficient space to get out, crash their doors into whoever’s car is beside them with absolutely no regard for the damage so occurring.
One would particularly never park next to a tradesman’s rough looking vehicle,
or one of those large four-wheel drives all grubby and uncared-for, or for that matter any vehicle which looked suspect, such as one with dents and grot all over it, because you’d know if you did that you’d get home to find another ding in your car where a non-caring idiot had shown total lack of regard for your valuable property.
Mind you, the problem resides primarily in the mean spaces you have provided in your car park. They are so small that it takes most of us elderly at least three goes to get our vehicles into them. My friend Tony solves the problem by parking his much-loved old Mercedes squarely on the line between two parking spaces thus denying entry to anyone beside him. But imagine if we all did that; the few parking spaces our Noosa Council has deigned to leave us around the place would soon be in desperate straits wouldn’t they? But that’s a matter I shall be taking up in separate correspondence.
Suffice to say that the damage to our vehicle was such that we were forced to trade it in on a new BMW 740i. Thereafter, having given the matter a good deal of thought and investigation, I found that I could park the Beemer reasonably safely by driving around the back of Coles and parking in the Staff parking area which always has plenty of spare spaces … a clear reflection of your Coles policy of providing insufficient staff to meet the needs of your customers who are forced to wait with loaded trolleys for ages as some incompetent young checkout woman chats to customers in a clearly failed policy of “attempted friendliness”.
Alternatively, I decide instead to brave the Self-Service disaster that you have installed in Coles these days. Here I find that the machine yells instructions at me, and confusing things happen when I try to master the damned machine. Apparently one can’t remove a loaded bag when the lights are red because if I do the machine will have a fit and demand to talk to a member of staff, who are always too busy dealing with someone else’s misadventure, and when they do get to me, I get this scathing look and a hoity toity “You MUST wait for the lights to go green before removing a loaded bag!”.
Not only that, but I am required to remember the name of the vegetable that I picked up during my miserable foray through your godforsaken store, else when I place the bag on the machine’s input-tray-thing I am unable to name what vegetable it is, so I am stuck there, or I make a wild guess and press “lettuce’ and the machine has a fit and demands to see the staff member who will give me a scathing look and tell me it should be ‘Mongolian Taproot’ or something.
Also the grey plastic bags on the out-tray never come out properly ready to be filled, so I have to spend like ages trying to get the next one to open. Have you ever tried to open one of your plastic bags Richard? It’s impossible to do so with dry aged hands. I have seen people lick their forefinger and thumb in their effort to achieve this test of dexterity that you impale us with, but who in their right mind is going to do that! I imagine such people lying in intensive care groaning their way to a ghastly death from the effects of such an action.
Another thing that is very troubling about your self-service monstrosity of an idea, is the temptation it leads people into. How many unfortunates have succumbed to the rashness of hastily chucking an expensive cheese block worth say $9.40 into a bag of vegetables removed from the out-tray and placed in their trolley. The staff member is always too busy dealing with some stressful issue at one of your other Disembarkation Points of Indifference and Frustration, hence the thief would arrive home with only their conscience to deal with. Besides it is hardly the fault of the conscience-wracked citizen because of the temptation you have placed in their way Richard; on your shoulders rests the dead hand of responsibility. The Bible says “Lead me not into Temptation…for thou shalt be unable to avoid the ultimate trial of righteousness…”, or some such heavily-loaded drivel like that.
Anyway, I have found relative safety for the Beemer, but I am worried that some disgruntled staff member may come and run the pointed end of their pen-knife the full length of my vehicle leaving a nasty scratch, or let down my tyres from spite as a warning to not park in their spaces. Can you imagine what such a scratch would look like on my new vehicle’s lovely black paint Richard? I know I should probably not have gone for the black but it is such a fashionable colour. And I do recognise that because I am a little doddery on the road other cars may not see me quickly enough in the black car to duck out of the way, owing to black being the colour of the tarmac and the night and stuff, but why should I compromise my aesthetics for the sake of a little road sense?
Also the blasted bats that come over at night make a shocking mess when they spatter their liquid droppings all over the place, and I have to leave the Beemer out in the driveway at night because the garage is full of our possessions gathered over many years, mementos, bits of boat gear, grandchildren’s toys and stuff. Have you ever tried to clean bat-droppings off your car or your driveway or your garage door Richard? I tell you it is a hard-won victory to eventually complete the task in readiness for the next night’s visitation. Seriously, I would rather be back in the Blitz where the Huns would at least do a proper job and leave nothing that required all next day to clean.
All in all, I do wish you would do something about your half-mad staff members rushing around with their pen-knives damaging everything in sight; as such a scratch would mean that I have to find sufficient money to meet the insurance excess, because the damned RACQ Insurance Company always demands to know the ‘Other Driver’s Licence Number’ which of course I would not have, there being no other driver per se, and consequently they would regard me as “At Fault” and thus required to pay the $600 excess demanded by their cleverly-worded Insurance policy. It may also mean that I would lose my ‘No 1 Rating For Life’ which offers a considerable saving on my annual premium. All of this because you have no coherent policy of controlling the unsocial deviances of your rampant staff.
Lest you sense that I am being somewhat tedious about cost-of-living pressures, I would remind you Richard that we elderly are “Asset rich and Income poor”, which leads me to another issue I would like to raise with you Richard. Your company would have a lot to do with Westpac Bank because you are both in the Top 50 of the ASX. I know, you will try to claim that you have nothing to do with the Westpac Bank, but truth be known you are all as thick as thieves, and hand in glove as it were, so it would be nice if you could do something about the wretchedly low interest rates we are presently getting. How can anyone be expected to survive on a miserable like 3.5% interest?
Besides, think it through, if we got more interest we would have more money to spend in your stores, get it? It’s not rocket science.
Another important matter I would like dealt with is that of the rotten chicken. At Thanksgiving this year my wife and I decided to not partake of our usual one meal a day of boiled rice and baked beans – although from time to time we do treat ourselves to some of that lovely “Meal for a Princess” which is often mistakenly stocked amongst the cat food – and we thought we would follow the turkey tradition popular at Thanksgiving. However, after weighing up the relative costs of purchasing a cooked turkey at the exorbitant prices you charge in your store Richard, we compromised by buying some of your Coles Minced Chicken. Imagine our horror and disgust when we opened the plastic wrapping on the minced “chicken” to find an horrendous smell emerging from it! Naturally we hurriedly re-wrapped the loathsome bundle in two of your grey plastic bags and the next day I took it to your refunds counter. The lady was not rude but she was clearly reluctant to be denied the $6.75 I had paid for this ghastly concoction, and was stoney-faced in handing over the money after unwrapping the mess and reeling back from the fetid blast.
Now it is clearly your policy to have no compensation mechanism for such an event, and there is no recognition of the time and expense involved in my going to and from your store in my futile efforts to enjoy a memorable Thanksgiving Dinner, however I would like you to give this some thought and perhaps find a means of assuaging my dissatisfaction about a very undesirable experience.
This is not the first time that I have found your Coles store goods to be less than pristine. I am reminded of some prawns I purchased years ago in better times, that were clearly on the point of being off. On that occasion the then Store Manager Graham somebody bent over backwards to apologise when I explained that I had purchased the prawns specifically as a treat for guests the previous night, and I was mortified by the realisation that I was offering a treat likely to bring them down with howling dysentery for a week.
Graham understood perfectly and offered me two cooked chickens as compensation, which I accepted although God knows why, as bits of one dry and stringy cooked chicken are enough to choke you when they stick in your throat, let alone two.
Well Richard that is all that I wish to raise with you at this stage, I look forward to your response in a timely fashion.
Ernest (known as Jim) J Barrass