For those of you out there like me, who have ever wondered how you could possibly get out of going to the gym with your boyfriend and instead sit on the couch eating chocolates you brought back from Canada while watching Glee re-runs, I have the solution. Write a letter of complaint. Who knew it was a sure-fire way of getting yourself booted from your gym and having your membership revoked? Not this gal! The following is the e-mail communication between Dustin Buckthal, the owner of The Front climbing gym, and myself.
I'm told these e-mails go straight to you so I'll address my complaint to you. I've waited 24 hours to even write this to give me time to chill out but I'm still pissed as hell. Last night was the second time I've tried to work out using your treadmill only to have the breaker trip and get jerked abruptly off the treadmill. The first time it happened, someone downstairs was notified who said they'd take care of it. I waited a little longer than 10 minutes before I thought "fuck this" and left.
Last night, all three treadmills were in use again and the breaker tripped, startling the hell out of all three of us. This time I waited until they started up again. Less than 5 minutes into my run, it happened again. Now I'm pissed and ready to go. My friend I carpooled with wasn't. He convinced me to stay and he got on the bike instead of the treadmill to avoid it happening again. I was able to get a consistent 15 minutes of running in before someone else hopped onto the third treadmill. I was not about to get jerked off the damn thing for a third time in one night so I gave up and read City Weekly while fuming and waited for my friend.
I pay $60/month to a gym where I can't even use the equipment? Are you fucking kidding me? Last night was the second time I wasted my evening and my gas by going to your gym and left feeling like I wanted to punch a baby. I go there to help alleviate my stress. Not CAUSE it. With the days getting shorter there's only going to be more and more people wanting to use the treadmills.In keeping with my schedule, I'm supposed to go there tomorrow night for cardio. I'm not wasting my time again but now what? Jog in place in my living room while watching Maury Povich reruns and cursing the fact I don't have cable? Or run outside and risk a hefty hospital bill after the inevitable frostbite ensues? I can't afford a hefty hospital bill and I can't afford two separate gym memberships. One for climbing and one for cardio. I live less than 5 minutes from Rockreation. I don't want a membership to Rockreation. I like The Front. I like the atmosphere. I love your staff. They really are the best. I like climbing here but please. For the love of everything American and holy. Fix your shit!
The problem is power. We're running another circuit to the treadmills on Friday.
You might consider raising issues you have earlier so they don't effect you so greatly. It's really not good for your health otherwise. We also offer great yoga classes, at no extra charge. Perhaps that would help.
Your ability to deflect the real issue (i.e. your power problem) and make it my issue (keeping in good health)is astounding. Not only that, you didn’t even use the word “effect” properly. (Fyi… it should be ‘affect’ with an ‘a’). May I suggest a language and grammar course for you? Perhaps that would help.
In the meantime, I look forward to running on a properly working treadmill once you get your power problems under control.
Really? Criticizing my grammar is your response? Aren’t you too old to be swearing in emails like that? I think you’d be happier elsewhere. There is always going to be issues at the gym, and I don’t really care to put up with such aggressive complaints. It’s not good for my health. I’ll go ahead and cancel your membership for you, starting Dec 10th.
As a business owner I would think you are tough-skinned enough to handle complaints. Nothing about my complaint was aggressive, I didn’t come in physically swinging bats at you, I simply wrote up an email outlining the frustrations that many of your customers were experiencing, not just me. It seems you would, as a business owner, be appreciative that I took the time to voice my complaint so you could be aware of your customer’s concerns. It sounds as though you heard my complaint and are taking steps to rectify the power problem. You are to be commended for that. As previously noted, I don’t want a membership at another gym so I would prefer my current membership be left as it is. I only wanted the power problem resolved, which you are in the process of resolving so it seems we both have a win/win. You have happy, paying customers, and we both have our good health.
I’m a business owner that appreciates feedback, but has no patience for disrespect. Perhaps you should come in to the gym and read that email to me, and tell me how it sounds then.
The problem was scheduled for resolution far before your irate email.
Rockreation is a fine gym, conveniently located for you, and perhaps they’ll do a better job at keeping your blood pressure below 230.
I find it odd that you find italics odd. That particular typography style has been around for quite some time. I would think you've seen it before now. Perhaps if I had drawn some figures in the dirt with a stick while grunting? I do apologize for getting all crazy and changing up the typeface on you like that. I'll try to be more consistent in the future. But that's neither here nor there, as I wanted to let you know what I find REALLY odd.
I find it bizarrely odd that you would extend an invitation to meet you at the gym to read over one of my e-mails, and then not even have the decent courtesy to show up. That's just bad form Dusty. Even from you. Perhaps once you return to town?
I'm available most nights other than Mondays or Wednesdays. Those nights are set aside for my LARPing team. The game master has insisted on more realistic weapons for the next battle. You would not BELIEVE the difficulty and skill level involved in creating a spiked skull mace out of foam. It's quite the commitment.
Anyhoo, looking forward to meeting with you upon your return.
At least you admit you are crazy, but I missed the part when I told you I would wait indefinitely at the gym for you. I’m sorry you thought I would. Unfortunately, being that it is the 10th, your membership is now terminated, and since you are not welcome at the gym, we won’t have the opportunity to have this reading. No soup for you. Enjoy Rockreation.
What’s this? A minor semblance of a sense of humor trying to peek through? No, that can’t be right. You’ve already proven you don’t have one. You are, however, to be commended. Grudgingly so, but commended nonetheless. Portraying yourself as a Nazi, possibly the most abhorred, despised, and loathsome people in the history of the world, was spot-on. At first I found it to be a little harsher than necessary but after further consideration, realized you probably know yourself better than anyone. Who am I to argue with your own self assessment? If you wish to be perceived as a gym Nazi. So be it.
One can only assume it’s because of this personality flaw that you are so severely lacking when it comes to your customer service skills. Your response to my original complaint was weak and your blatant disregard for the safety and well being of your clientele, alarming. And so, in the spirit of Christmas, I’ve taken the liberty of composing an apology e-mail on your behalf. All that is required of you is a signature. In the event you find this beyond your literary skill set ,a simple X will suffice. Let’s begin, shall we?
Dear Revered Customer,
Thank you so much for bringing this to my attention. While I was already aware of the problem before receiving your request for improvement, I had not taken the steps necessary to remedy the situation. I will do so now.
I am gratified to hear that no harm has come to you or others patronizing my gym as a result of my negligence. In the future I will strive to make the gym as safe and enjoyable as possible for my customers. I value your membership and as such would like to offer you a month free of charge. Nay, make that a year!
I hope that you will accept my token of apology and I look forward to any future suggestions you may have to offer.
The Gym Nazi
Thank you Dusty. I accept. Feel free to use this as a standard letter of apology in the unlikely event that you ever receive another complaint.
It’s been a few days and I have yet to hear back from him. I can’t help but feel like he’s trying to break up with me. Maybe I’m reading more into this than I should be. He probably just needs another day…or two to cool off. I feel like we really had something. Maybe the letter he receives from the Better Business Bureau on my behalf will be just the sort of cue needed that will enable him to express his true feelings towards me. *sigh* Men.