Saturday, November 17, 2007

Grass Valley Curse and Beyond

History
The curse has been an issue since I came to the area in 1978—Yes, I are a graduate of Nevada Union, and I have many fond memories but I also have some that I wish to forget—let me just say I am not a big fan or a proud supporter of my alma mater.

That said I have been gathering information and data, not scientifically mind you, but personal scientific data (huh?) ANYWAY, the data covers businesses, people, government, and events. And there have been many changes and not many are good—granted this this curse that I have bestowed upon Grass Valley, is really a phenomenon that happens in every city in every part of the world, but I am only interested in my little corner known as Nevada County.

What is the Curse?
As a customer, we have the need, desire, and right to be treated, served, and listened to with great respect--this is known as CUSTOMER SERVICE; we also have the need for products we purchase to be of the utmost quality either in flavor, portions, and price as in the food industry; or durability, price, and it does what it was promised it would do, as would be the case in the retail industry.

The curse is when an establishment, either in the food industry or retail, has one of the criteria in low standards that as a customer is difficult to keep patronizing the establishment. Most places that deserve the curse are places with two or more marks against them, for me, the biggest mark is Customer Service. If a company has great food or products but the service is below standard, then they have the CURSE.

My motto is "Customer Service is more important, to me, than price." And I stand by that with absolute conviction.

Now understand that each business's criteria is dynamic--it changes depending on the products and services they provide.

Cursed List
Although the restaurant list is based, and yes biased, upon whether a place is vegetarian friendly, there are reasons other than that which are explained, and understand that we do not frequent many places in the area due to them not being vegetarian friendly, so this is not a complete list of curse places in the area, so you may not see McDonald's on this list, if they are in fact cursed or not; we don't know as we have not been there in over 20 years, so your list may be different than ours for different reasons.

  • Amigo's & Co.
  • Margarita's
    • We go maybe twice a year and realize maybe we shouldn't have (prices)
  • Chevy's
    • service & food choices
  • Maria's
  • Chili's
    • food choices (they deleted their veggie items)
  • Villa Venenzia
    • prices
  • Miner Moes
    • prices, atmosphere, and cleanliness--absolutely terrible (good pizza though)
  • Cirino's NC
  • Subway
  • Tortilla grill
    • One of my burritos had meat in it as I was putting salsa in it.

Recommendations
Not many restaurants in Nevada County stay at a specific level of service and quality--of course employees come and go, understandable, but the peaks and valley's are so extreme.

I used to recommend places, but I realized I was changing it every month, this place that was once great now sucks.

The basic problem for me is there are not many vegetarian friendly places or understand what vegetarianism is. Just because you put veggies in soup does not mean it is vegetarian--the broth has chicken in it. And just because you have a veggie burrito, does not mean it is vegetarian--the beans have lard, you cooked the veggies on the same grill with meat juice....

We used to visit Chili's and Chevy's, but not anymore.

So I have no recommendations here. We go through this for some lunch dates with my wife and dinner's for celebrations. Mostly we just stay home and cook--tastes better.

The problem with making recommendations is that everyone is different. For example if I recommended Pete's Pub Style Pizza, some may find it over priced and too extravagant for a pizza, and some may find the seating availability to be tiny.

But the biggest problem is when we find a place and fall in love with every aspect of the business over time our tastes or the establishments business practices change and we are back to looking for a new place to go. Our list of places we like to go to is dynamic. "Today the sandwich, or whatever, is not as good as it was yesterday, and this is happening a little too often." That is when you know it is time to either tell them or stop patronizing them.

Standouts
After the spewing of not recommending anyone, I will highly recommend these places as they a places that we have been to over the years have stayed consistent with their prices, quality, and service.
  • Friar Tucks
  • Wonderful III Chinese
  • Bubba's Bagels
  • Jamba Juice
  • Julie's Hot Dog Haven & sandwich Express
  • Pete's Pub style Pizza
  • Original Petes
  • South Pine Cafe-Grass Valley
  • Carino's Italian Grill
    • Actually just been twice and thankfully Chevy's (I know, I would never go again, but we were with other people) was a 45 minute wait and next door was Carino's WOW!

Beyond
Some of the above mentioned places are out of our county. And the next issue will contain other places than restaurants.
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Saturday, November 10, 2007

A Place in Our Heart

We still have a place in our heart for Grass Valley; do not get us misunderstood. We despise the government (Grass Valley city and its supervisors), all the contractors building on the fertile and beautiful land, and the residence that let it happen and then visit those places.

Heck, at some point in time I do believe I was never going to shop in the Glenbrook shopping center for what they did the the lake, but all that passes in time.

Oh well, people are an odd species. Wonder what the universe was thinking of? Of course we may have been left here and not expected to live.

If I had power, money, and the fortitude, I would gather all the land and make this a sactuary, but alas, most of the pristine landscape has been ravaged. Just like the song by the eagles and counting crows
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We Have Moved

Yes, We have moved to a new home.

Due to many reasons like noise, asshole neighbors with their dogs, thumper music, obnoxious and inconsiderate  children, sirens, and the fact that the house got too expensive to pay for--yes we bit it in the increase of mortgage rates--we got rid of the house we were in for 15 years and moved to a more civilized area in the county.

although we still care about what happens with the city and its outlying regions, we are becoming numb to any changes that are going on, since we do not see it 24 / 7, it does not concern us as much as it used to.

Funny when you think about it and I know how people feel now. (If it is not in my back yard or effects me in any negative way, I do not have the time or the effort to worry about it--this is the reason that the dorsy drive interchange is not a popular vote as it only effects 5% of the population. the other 95% do not see spending the money. yet, if it is built, as with the movie saying and it is true "IF YOU BUILD IT THEY WILL COME."

  1. People will use it.
  2. It will save time for the ambulances.
  3. the traffic on East Main and Idaho Maryland Intersection will be 50% less
    • no need to spend money on a round-a-bout, which is a joke, a band-aid to the real problem.
But again, we are no longer in the thick of the city, and at this point do not care about its government, people, or the community.

Let them destroy it. We have moved on.


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