Now is Not the Time

Patti Parish-Kaminski, Publisher

By Patti Parish-Kaminski, Publisher

In the midst of a global pandemic, this has become my mantra. You see, it’s harder to accomplish things right now both as a business owner and as a consumer. It takes longer to get things done; there’s more time-consuming steps to what otherwise would be mundane tasks. It’s simply the nature of the beast.

As I have faced challenges in my business since March, I have lived these changes, changes not only in how individuals and companies respond to challenges, but the very nature of the challenges themselves – fraud, erroneous mistakes, lack of customer service. Mother says because the A team players are either furloughed or unemployed in so many companies, we are dealing with the second string to solve customer issues, and they simply don’t have the experience, especially during these critical times. Mother loves sports.

Case and point. Both my and Kolton’s gas cards were scammed at pumps in two different Texas cities. The charges were five times the amount of our normal charges in cities that we did not visit nor reside, and they were for copious amounts of diesel. We do not own any vehicles that require diesel. I thought this was pretty cut and dry since I have done business with this company for 25 years, and the charges were so abnormal for our account. But when I reported the scam, the gas card company informed me that in order for the charges to be reversed, I had to file a police report and then contact the gas card company again with a laundry list of required information from local law enforcement. And, the report had to be filed where the majority of the incidents took place, in this case Houston.

Now, I remember Houston. I grew up there. But I haven’t been there nor have any intention of going there in the near future. Sorry H-town, it’s just part of my hunker down mentality right now. So, I called the Missouri City Police Department (MCPD) as we have lived there for 25 years, and yes, they were beyond helpful. MCPD definitely has the A team on the field right now.

Two days into the issue and after multiple phone calls with the tome of requested information at hand, I was still awaiting confirmation that these fraudulent charges would be removed from my account. That’s when the gas company received my “now is not the time” soliloquy.

I am precious until pushed, but when the pushing starts, I tend to finish it. And “now is not the time” has been my mantra for many of life’s challenges right now as we are all facing a formidable enemy, and we need to help each other being part of one another’s solutions, not part of our problems.

So, when vendors deposit a check you have issued for services twice trying to receive a double payment, “now is not the time.”

When you cancel services in April with the appropriate confirmation jumping through all of the appropriate hoops, and you are still receiving invoices in July, “now is not the time.”

When your health insurance company tells you the premium they have been invoicing you for the past three months really isn’t the correct amount – it’s $140 more – “now is not the time.”

When someone at the grocery store invades your 6’ bubble and isn’t wearing a mask, “now is not the time.”

At this point, all I have to do is utter the words in response to my husband or my kids’ queries, and it stops them cold. They know not to poke the bear.

When Tim became ill, it really put things into perspective for me. Dealing with the minutia became – and still is – not an activity I want to invest in. Now is just not the time. Now IS the time to offer a hand up and help one another – not create more issues for us to deal with. Our plates are full; our cups overflow. As a company, we’ve done our very best working with our clients letting many of our valued advertisers out of their contracts. We’re all struggling; we get it. We want to be part of the solution, not part of the problem, because my friends, “now is not the time.”