November 13, 2011

Why I Hate Pizza

Okay, that's not really true.  I LIKE pizza.  What I have come to hate is trying to freaking ORDER it down here.  We successfully ordered pizza for the movers when we got here at the end of last July, and it's gone downhill from there.  Not long after we moved, Papa John's changed their website and we have been screwed ever since.

AND it's made of a giant pepperoni!!

It's bad enough that for most of our tenure here we have not been on the GPS grid.  Our house is in a relatively new subdivision so no one can find us half the time--especially pizza guys.   I very recently discovered that we have now made it onto Google maps (but not yet TomTom), though they still list our street as being in the wrong suburb.  Typical.  When we put the contract on the house, it was listed as being in "Watkinsville."  After I pointed out that most of the other houses on the street were listed in a different suburb, they went running to research it and ended up making us sign an addendum officially changing the street address.  So apparently even the builder doesn't know where the heck we live. Turns out that part of the problem was a post office power struggle over which office would be forced to service this area.  I should have taken that as a warning.

Anyhow, I spent the next couple of months being ping-ponged back and forth between the Watkinsville Papa John's and the one in Athens because neither could really decide whose responsibility it was to deliver to my house.  The Athens store is slightly closer, but they insist that we are supposed to be on the Watkinsville route.  The Watkinsville store admitted this, but could never find our house.   The thing that really bugged me, though, was that we weren't the only house out here and you can't tell me that a handful of other houses, all with kids in elementary or middle school, never ordered pizza.  One time my online order went to the Athens store, who waited 90 minutes before calling me to say that they couldn't deliver because they were the wrong store and that I needed to call the other franchise.  I finally got my pizza 3 hours later.  Stuff like this went on for some time, and in my frustration (particularly with the very rude and unhelpful Athens store manager) I became very testy on the phone.  Seriously, Papa John's--I don't need your attitude; I have one of my own.

Or at least it is on the Atlanta Highway--you'll notice the B-52s were
looking for a "Love Shack," not a "Pizza Shack."  I now know why.

Eventually I was passed over to some supervisor who listened sympathetically but who wasn't very helpful.  After that I was passed over to a local PR person who was infinitely more helpful.  She agreed that the Athens store should be my store and that they would look into redrawing the boundaries on the map, made sure that it was my online ordering store (while Watkinsville remained my "pick up only" store--go figure),  and mailed me 4 "free pizza" coupons to thank me for sticking with them in spite of the stupidity.

The next 3-4 times I ordered pizza, I received it in a timely fashion from the Athens store.  Then they started to revert to old behavior.  After that, I started getting calls again that they had cancelled my order because it is not in their delivery range (in spite of the fact that it is 2 freaking miles closer than the other store), and forwarded my order to the other shop.  Watkinsville picked up the slack admirably in spite of their earlier ineptitude, though they still had to call every single time to figure out where I was.  The downside was that I then had to pay them in cash.  I like to order online expressly so that I do not have to worry about dredging up enough cash to pay the delivery guy, and I did not appreciate Athens taking that choice away from me by shipping my order to Watkinsville without first asking me.  More than once the hubs and I had to empty both our wallets to scrape together the requisite amount plus tip.

I don't know if this is really true, but it would certainly explain a lot.

Before long, I just quit ordering because it was just too big a hassle between the obnoxious Athens manager and the inability of the Watkinsville drivers to find us in a timely fashion.  True, I could order pizza from other places, but I've never really cared that much for Domino's and most places won't deliver this far out.  Besides, I actually like Papa John's pizza.  I just despise the fact that I am no longer able to get it to my house without drama of epic proportions.  I ordered from Papa John's for 20 years in Memphis and never had a problem getting it.  Here I've had nothing but problems.  It's been very frustrating.  I've tried to get both managers to switch my online account to reflect the Watkinsville store as both my delivery and pick up store, but neither of them seems able to accomplish this.  They both say I have to do it through customer service, but neither would handle it for me nor find me the number so I could do it myself.  So I just gave up and stopped ordering.

That was probably 3-4 months ago, maybe more.  I finally reconciled myself to the fact that I would only ever get pizza when I had sufficient funds at hand to call in the order.  Then, a couple of weeks ago, I got a random email stating that I had won a free large pizza from Papa John's as part of their "Million Pizza Giveaway."  Seriously??  You say you'll give me a free pizza, Papa John's, but you and I both know that you won't actually deliver it to me...and now I want my freaking free pizza!

You say it, but you don't mean it.


So I dug through my old emails, found the one from the nice PR lady, dated last November, and emailed her Friday afternoon to detail the difficulties I've had getting pizza since our last chat, and how and why I had quit ordering.  I told her about the free pizza email and how I was willing to try one last time to get my free pizza, but that I wanted my store switched from the Athens franchise (because the manager there is an ass).  It should be interesting to see what happens when she receives the email tomorrow morning.  Maybe I'll get a pizza out of it, maybe not.  I probably don't actually need pizza anyway.  But it's just the principle of the thing, because I so hate being defeated by the buttheads of the world.  And no, Papa John's, I don't have an attitude problem, you have a perception problem.  Get your shit together or lose me as a customer forever and then watch me bad-mouth you even more.  Online.   I'm just sayin'.

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