Tuesday, January 02, 2007

How long does it take to print a thesis?

Most would probably say a day, perhaps two. In my case it appears as though I am not that lucky. So far it has been two and a half weeks. That's right, I took my thesis in for printing Dec. 15 thinking that it would be printed plenty of time before Christmas so I could organize it all and submit it to the Faculty of Grad Studies and finally be done. Oh no, apparently I chose the most incompetent place to print my thesis. Ironically they are the place the university gets all their printing done at and they are recommended by the Faculty of Grad Studies. The other ironic thing is their motto is "A tradition of excellence". Ya, not so much.

The thesis printing saga began Dec. 15. I happily took my thesis in to be printed and was told it would take a week due to my colour images. Ideally I would have liked it that day but this printing place is supposed to be very good so I figure what the hey, I'll still get it before Christmas. A week later I'm all excited to pick up the final version of my printed thesis. So I head over to the printing place...

Me: "Hi, I'm here to get my thesis"

Printing dude: "Oh right, I was just going to send that to print"

Me: [confused and somewhat annoyed] "What?"

Printing dude: "Oh don't worry, it will only take 10 minutes"

Me: So if I come back in 10 minutes it will be done?

Printing dude: Yep

So off I go to waste some time. Meanwhile I'm supposed to be at work but I ducked out to get my thesis thinking it wouldn't take too long. I wait 15 minutes for good measure before going back.

Me: Hi again

Printing dude: Hey. Umm... you wanted colour images too, right?

Me: Yes

Printing dude: Umm, ya, I forgot to order those. Are they really important?

Me: [thinking - Damn right they are important. No I just asked for colour prints because I'm crazy like that] Umm, ya they are important.

Printing dude: Oh, ok. What were the page numbers of the colour pages?

Me: There are over 30 colour pages, I don't have all the page numbers memorized. I can email the page numbers to you.

Printing dude: Ya do that. If you send them to me today I can get it printed by Jan. 2. We are closed during Christmas and all so that's the earliest you can get them.

Me: So they will be ready Jan. 2 for sure?

Printing dude: Yep. Hey, I wrote down you wanted 5 and 1 but I couldn't remember if you wanted 5 copies on thesis quality paper and one on regular paper or the other way around.

Me: I wanted five on thesis paper and one on regular paper.

Printing dude: Ya I didn't remember so I did 5 copies on each so now you have 10 copies of your thesis. I'll only charge you for 5 though.

Me: [thinking - damn right you will]

Me: Alright, so I'll email those page numbers to you and I'll pick up the colour copies Jan 2.

Printing dude: Sounds good.

Meanwhile I'm pissed off beyond belief that I waited a week for nothing and now I have to go back in a few weeks to get the colour copies. I lug the 10 copies of my thesis back to work and my arms almost die due to the weight of the box. As I'm looking through my thesis I notice that all my images on the thesis quality paper have this gray box around the images. This doesn't appear on the regular paper copies. When I email the guy the colour page numbers I mention this gray box thing. He emails me back and says it's because he was in a hurry when he printed my thesis so he sent it to some printer that printed gray boxes around my images. Ya no kidding you were in a hurry. You forgot about printing my thesis until I showed up. He said he would re-print the thesis quality paper ones on a different printer and that those would be ready Jan. 2. I email him back and say, "Ok. If for some reason you don't get everything printed by Jan. 2 please call me".

Today I wait until late afternoon to give the guy plenty of time to get everything printed. I head over to the print place yet again to pick up my thesis.

Me: Hi

Printing dude: Hey, you're here to get your colour prints?

Me: Yes [a bit confused as to why he never mentioned the thesis re-printing as well]

Printing dude: Ok, here are the colour prints

Me: And the re-printing on the thesis quality paper?

Printing dude: Oh right, ya I haven't done that yet.

Me: [big sigh] Ok. I need to have my thesis submitted this week so I need those copies.

Printing dude: Oh no problem. I'll print them later today and you can pick them up tomorrow.

Me: Tomorrow for sure?

Printing dude: Yep, first thing tomorrow.

Me: [pissed off beyond belief that I have to come back yet again] So there are 6 copies of the colour prints?

Printing dude: Umm... I think so. I haven't had a chance to check.

Me: [thinking - this is your freaking job!]

Printing dude: First day back after Christmas is alway busy.

Me: [thinking - yet whenever I walk in here you are always on the computer so how busy can you be?]

Printing dude: This has been quite the ordeal hey?

Me: Yes [thinking - ya because you are an idiot]

Printing dude: Well here are your colour prints anyways. I didn't get a price for them yet but I can figure that out and let you know tomorrow. Did you want to take them now or get them tomorrow.

Me: I'll take them now [thinking - because if I don't you'll probably lose them or give them to someone else]

Printing dude: Ya you probably want to sort them into your thesis

Me: Umm... right. [ya into my imaginary copies of my thesis since you neglected, yet again, to print everything]

So now I get to make yet another trip to the printing place to pick up my thesis printing. Or so he tells me. I've learned to not expect my printing to be done when I'm told so I'll be surprised if it's done tomorrow and it's done right. And I thought the thesis defense would be the hardest part. That was a breeze compared to dealing with the incompetence of the printing place. I think their "tradition of excellence" ended when they hired this dude.

2 comments:

Chellezilla said...

Holy crap!! What an ordeal! Glad it all worked out in the end, but man. Some people.

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