Category Archives: New York

Sick of Pressing Buttons and going on Hold…

86-year Old Lady’s Letter to Bank

The bank manager thought it amusing enough to have it published in the New York Times.

Shown below, is an actual letter that was sent to a bank by an 86 year old woman.

Dear Sir:

I refer, of course, to the automatic monthly deposit of my entire pension, an arrangement which, I admit, has been in place for only eight years.

You are to be commended for seizing that brief window of opportunity, and also for debiting my account $30 by way of penalty for the inconvenience caused to your bank.

My thankfulness springs from the manner in which this incident has  caused me to rethink my errant financial ways.
I noticed that whereas I personally answer your telephone calls and letters, — when I try to contact you, I am confronted by the  impersonal, overcharging, pre-recorded, faceless entity which your bank has become.

My mortgage and loan repayments will therefore and hereafter no  longer be automatic, but will arrive at your bank, by check, addressed personally and confidentially to an employee at your bank whom you must nominate.

Please find attached an Application Contact which I require your chosen employee to complete.

I am sorry it runs to eight pages, but in order that I know as much about him or her as your bank knows about me, there is no alternative..

Please note that all copies of his or her medical history  must be countersigned by a Notary Public, and the mandatory details of his/her financial situation (income, debts, assets and liabilities) must be accompanied by documented proof.

In due course, at MY convenience, I will issue your employee with a PIN number which he/she must quote in dealings with me.

I regret that it cannot be shorter than 28 digits but, again, I have modeled it on the number of button  presses required of me to access my account balance on your phone bank service.

As they say, imitation is the sincerest form of flattery.

Let me level the playing field even further.


     Password will be communicated to you at a later date to that Authorized Contact mentioned earlier.

I am writing to thank you for bouncing my check with which I endeavored to pay my plumber last month.
By my calculations, three nanoseconds must have elapsed between his presenting the check and the arrival in my account of the funds needed to honor it.

From now on, I, like you, choose only to deal with a flesh-and-blood person.

Be aware that it is an offense under the Postal Act for any other person to open such an envelope.

When you call me, press buttons as follows:


#1. To make an appointment to see me

#2. To query a missing payment..

#3. To transfer the call to my living room in case I am there.

#4 To transfer the call to my bedroom in case I am sleeping

#5. To transfer the call to my toilet in case I am attending to nature.

#6. To transfer the call to my mobile phone if I am not at home

#7. To leave a message on my computer, a password to access my computer is required.

#8. To return to the main menu and to listen to options 1 through 7.

#9. To make a general complaint or inquiry.

The contact will then be put on hold, pending the attention of my automated answering service.

      While this may, on occasion, involve a lengthy wait, uplifting music will play for the duration of the call.

May I  wish you a happy, if ever so slightly less prosperous New Year?


We don’t like being old in the first place, so it doesn’t take much too piss us off.

#10. This is a second reminder to press* for English.

Regrettably, but again following your example, I must also levy an establishment fee to cover the setting up of this new arrangement.

Your Humble Client

And remember: Don’t make old People mad.

Press 8 for Customer Service

Press 8 for Customer Service

Just goes to show – doesn’t matter whether you’re young or old, man or woman, single or married  – I bet you’re still fed up to the back teeth with pressing buttons, being put on hold and rarely being able to speak to a real person. Let’s fight back – I love this. Pass it on and let’s give bureaucracy the boot!


Oligoville rides again…

Mr New York Fashion Writer himself, the very interesting Jeffrey B Felner has just reviewed SHI Symbol for his Oligoville Fashion and Music lovers network. With a raft of pics to illustrate his points, SHI Symbol is certainly seen as the trendy and stylish accessory for 2010.

This is a screen capture of Jeffrey’s Home Page – SHI Symbol was the featured article today 14th June 2010.

Jeffrey B Felner's Oligoville Screen Print SHI Symbol 14th June 2010

Jeffrey B Felner's Oligoville Screen Capture SHI Symbol 14th June 2010

You can read Jeffrey’s entire review at: Oligoville.

Don’t forget to leave a comment for him too.

Fashion Guru provides Weekly Dose of What’s Hot and What’s Not…


Jeffrey B Felner Fashion Guru & writer for SHI Symbol International

Jeffrey B Felner Fashion Guru

SHI Symbol is very pleased to announce New York fashion writer, Jeffrey B Felner’s contribution to this blog. You’ll be kept abreast of What’s Hot and What’s Not, the latest trends, fashion faux pas and more every week.

Jeffrey’s first post is very topical with Earth Day literally upon us – today!

Do enjoy and please give us some feedback. We’d love to put more of what YOU want to know or read about.

FASHION BY THE RULES: Eco Fashions 2010 

Forty years after the first Earth Day, the world is in greater peril than ever. While climate change is the greatest challenge of our time, it also presents the greatest opportunity – an unprecedented opportunity to build a healthy, prosperous, clean energy economy now and for the future.

In recognition of this day, I thought that I might spotlight 2 different companies that are trying to make a difference to the environment of this country in particular.

With a name like DIRTBALL FASHION, one might get the wrong idea, but in

Dirtball Fashions White Tee Shirt

fact, the company produces a selection of tee shirts and recycled fashion for members of the entire family.  They have even taken into consideration that since the items are produced in America, they have reduced the carbon footprint by lowering their shipping distances. Joe Fox is the president of this innovative company that is making a difference in how we market fashion in the 21 century. Please visit them at   for a complete presentation and facts about producing garments in an ecologically friendly way.

Earth Day fashion jewelry

Earth Day fashion jewelry

Next up, is a jewelry company, which dedicates its Xo green collection which is made with recycled material as a reminder that we must keep mother earth beautiful. The geometrically based designs are offered in many distinct colorations and also in a variety of necklaces, earrings and bracelets.  The designs are not age specific so they can be worn by kids and adults with the same pleasing effect.

EArth Day earrings

Earth Day Earrings

Basically these 2 companies serve as a reminder that there are many ways to be involved with the environment and that doing so is not just about tree hugging and giving up all the things we have so become accustomed to during our lives.




You can read more of Jeffrey’s updates here and of course on his own blog at

Top 5 Romantic Places to Propose

Most people dream of falling in love, having a romantic courtship and an idyllic wedding. Here SHI Symbol shares Kevin Phelps’ opinion on some of the most sought after and romantic places in the world to enjoy your love, courtship and place to be proposed to. And I’m sure Kevin is the right man to know – he’s a sought after wedding photographer!

If you are in love and want to marry someone then you must propose to her. But, how and where can you propose your beloved? There are many places like the theaters, restaurants and sea beaches where you can ask for her hand and present her the ring. People go for innovative ways of proposing their girl. But, what matters is the time and location. To make your proposal one of the memorable events of your and your lover’s life you must select a perfect place and time to propose your partner. Here are the top 5 romantic places to propose:

1. Paris has been one of the most romantic destinations for lovers. You can take your partner to the Eiffel Tower at sunset and ask her to take the most important decision of her life. The beauty of the place with golden riverside buildings would be a perfect setting for asking her to marry you.

Find romance in Paris with SHI Symbol

Find romance in Paris with SHI Symbol

2. Venice: This city is one of the romantic proposal spots on earth. You can take your lover to a vacation to this city and propose to her in front of the beautiful canals, architectural splendors or at the picturesque landscapes of the city.

Venice - fall in love all over again

Venice - fall in love all over again

3. Hawaii: The long black sand beach and the green landscape bordering lotus ponds of the city would definitely make your lover romantic. You can start a new chapter of your life amidst the mesmerizing beauty of the streams, waterfalls and cliffs.

Heavenly Hawaii for happy occasions

Heavenly Hawaii for happy occasions

4. Las Vegas: Take your partner to the Bellagio in Las Vegas and propose to her in front of the fountains. You can also get some musicians play the best romantic music in the background. This would be an ideal setting for your partner to say YES.

Lovin' in Las Vegas

Lovin' in Las Vegas

5. Rome: The Vatican City offers a wide variety of choices to make your proposal. You can either take a walk along the Tiber River or visit the Colosseum with your lover. Look for the right moment and propose to her. The place would definitely make her feel special and add grandeur to the proposal.

Romantic interludes in Rome

Romantic interludes in Rome

Apart from the above mentioned top 5 destinations on earth, you can consider New York or go to Seville in Spain with your beloved. You can also try other places like Switzerland and Taj Mahal in India to make your lady feel special. It would surely make her dream come true! So, what are you waiting for? Just take her on a trip to one of the top romantic destinations in the world and spill out the proposal!

This guest blog post was written by the wedding and marriage experts at WeddingPhotographyinUtah who are an excellent resource to finding great Utah wedding photography at an affordable price.

Predictions – Fact or Fiction?

Some thought provoking information below – is it fact or is it fiction?

I guess it depends on if you believe in the power people have when they can ‘predict’ the future.

My thanks to Tony Fernandes for sending me this information.

Predicting the Future

Predicting the Future

Take a look at the following – the first piece includes some information on what was originally predicted for 2009 by someone called ‘Nikki’ – sorry no idea who this person is but I guess it doesn’t matter.

The second portion is the prediction record for 2010. I supposed we’ll know more on 1/1/2011 !!!

Last year Nikki predicted Sarah Palin would write a tell-all book, the split between Avril Lavigne and her husband, Jennifer Hudson would win a Grammy, that Kate Winslett would be nominated for an Oscar, and the Late  Heath Ledger would also be nominated for an Oscar.

Nikki predicted the plane crash over the Hudson River in New York City, the Monorail accident at Disneyworld Florida, Robin Williams’ health problems as well as she predicted the passing of Ted Kennedy, Unice Schriver, Farrah Fawcett, Patrick Swayze and Michael Jackson.

Here’s how Nikki sees 2010…

World Predictions
1. Trouble on the moons surface and atmosphere.
2. A hostage taking incident at a New York City bank.
3. An avalanche at Whistler, B.C..
4. The Lost City of Atlantis will be found.
5. More ancient Mummies will be found in Egypt .
6. Treasure from a Spanish Galleon Ship will be found under the sea.

7. A worldwide power blackout.
8. A tsunami in Japan .
9. Reptiles invading El Passo , Texas .
10. Another shooting, this time at a US Naval Base.
11. A terrorist attack at Edwards Airforce Base.
12. A fire on Broadway in New York .
13. A famous castle will burn to the ground.
14. Giant bats will attack a city in South America .
15. Tragedy at an oil rig.
16. A shooting in Copenhagen , Denmark in a popular shopping area – many people injured and killed.
17. A terrorist attack in Germany .
18. A terrorist attack in British Columbia .
19. An oil spill destroys the Mississippi River .
20. Trouble at the Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco , California .
21. A mysterious insect will kill the corn crop in Iowa , USA .
22. A huge breakthrough in the cure for Diabetes through stem cell research.
23. A bridge collapses in China killing thousands.
24. A fire at the home of the Wall Street Journal.

25. A commercial airliner crashes over the state of Arizona .
26. A plane will be hijacked at Toronto International Airport .
27. Two cruise ships will collide in the Caribbean .
28. Passing of Fidel Castro.
29. A very large earthquake in Seattle , Washington destroying a lot of landmarks and killing many people.
30. Many rare white lions will be found in Africa

31. A major coffee chain will go bankrupt.
32. A tragedy in the Rain Forest around a swinging bridge.
33. A blimp exploding over a stadium.
34. Danger around President Barack Obama.

35. Assassination attempt against President Barack Obama.
36. Assassination of Barack Obama.
37. Yet another sex scandal in Washington , DC .
38. More exotic insects in fruits and vegetables which are imported attacking people.
39. President Sarkozy of France in danger.

40. Tragedy at the Grand Canyon .

41. Trouble on the Paris subway.
42. Giant earthquake in California.
43. Giant earthquake in Los Angeles , San Francisco and San Diego .
44. A devastating earthquake in Rome and Naples , Italy .
45. A shark kills a famous Australian athlete.

46. A fire at the famed Redwood Forest north of San Francisco , California .

47. Danger around the Dali Lama.
48. Trouble and explosion at the Ambassador Bridge .
49. A famous Las Vegas casino hotel will burn to the ground.
50. Former US President Jimmy Carter has to watch his health.
51. A terrorist attack in Dubai.
52. Serious injuries to a Hollywood movie star on an amusement  ride at a theme park.

53. A person from the world of fashion will perish in a plane crash.
54. A cure for the disease Lupus.
55. A plane crashes at a major airport because of a computer glitch and problems.
56. A disease will kill maple trees..
57. An ocean liner will sink like the Titanic.
 58. More arm and leg transplants being successful.
 59. A ferry boat will capsize with many people on board.
60. Air Force One will be hijacked.
61. Washington, DC. On fire.
62. Pirates will hijack a cruise ship and kill some people onboard.
63. A famous Hollywood actor will be held for ransom.
64. A politician’s children will be kidnapped.
65. An insect will destroy lilac trees.
66. A major perfume company will go bankrupt.
67. A major heist at a New York museum.
68. A robbery at Tiffany’s in New York .
69. An explosion on the New York subway.
70. An explosion at Rockefeller Center .
71. A daredevil will attempt to climb the Empire State Building .
72. A worldwide computer virus.
73. More ancient dinosaur fossils will be found.
74. A ski lift will come tumbling down at a resort.

75. A sea serpent will be found off the coast of Japan .
76. Explosions in Iran .
77. Explosions at the Great Wall of China .
78. China and Tibet at war.
79. Ancient carvings and artifacts will be found in Mexico .
80. Hillary Clinton has to watch her health and an assassination attempt.
81. Bill Clinton has to watch his health.
82. Invasion of Iran by the US .
83. Iran will attack another country

84. A biological attack on the US .
85. A tsunami off the coast of Alaska .
86. Earthquakes and volcanic eruptions in Alaska .
87. Sarah Palin will divorce.
88. Uprising in Venezuela .
89. Chavez has to be careful of his well being.
90. A daredevil will scale the Eiffel Tower .
91. Another planet with life will be found in the Universe.
92. Problems with North Korea .
93. North Korea will launch a missile towards Japan and South Korea .
94. Stock market will plunge including the Asian markets for a couple of days to a week but will recover.
95. A new species of fish will be found.
96. A terrorist attack in London , England , Los Angeles , NewYork , Scotland , Ireland , Toronto , Florida , and Chicago.
97. Arrest in the Madeline McCann case.
98. Arrest in the Jon Benet Ramsey case.

99. Americas Most Wanted John Walsh has to watch for danger and his health.
100. Nancy Grace will receive many awards.
101. Attacks in Karachi , Mumbai , Turkey , Calcutta , Oslo ,Norway .

102. The Sydney Opera House in Australia will have a massive fire

So are you all cheered up now?

If anyone knows who NIKKI is, please share with us. We’d love to chat with her.

And just in case you have someone equally as gifted in predicting the future, I wouldn’t mind a few more happy predictions! At least we’d have more to look forward to.

The Coolest City for Singles in 2009

Coolest place for Singles in 2009 - where else but New York

Coolest place for Singles in 2009 - where else but New York

What’s been going on in the US in the last 12 months or so? Ah yes, THE  recession, the fall of Wall Street, overall reduced consumer spending and the massive impact on the entire country in particular being felt by New Yorkers. Therefore, it was surprising to find New York was rated Number 1 out of 40 metropolitan US Cities for COOLNESS by Singles, according to Lauren Sherman of’s latest report on the Best Cities for Singles in 2009.

In terms of number of Singles in New York in the overall population – Singles make up 28%, so it is definitely the place to meet other like minded Singles, find a potential partner and even fall in love, with the absolutely perfect for the job SHI Symbol.

And if you’re into Online Dating, said the New York metro area active Online Dating account holders accounts for 8% of the entire site’s active members. Considering Los Angeles is the 2nd largest metropolitan area in the USA, it only boasts a 5% take up rate, New Yorkers are doing very well!

Loads of other interesting comparisons were made in the report between cities from the cost of living, culture, nightlife, to the ratio of Singles to the entire population of  a metropolitan city.

To find out how your City rated in all these interesting areas and more, click here for the report.

Top Ranked Cities for Singles – a MUST read


Forbes com logo

Forbes com logo

I bet you are thinking in 1st place there’s New York and 2nd there’ll be San Francisco.  Well you’re wrong on this occasion. just conducted their annual research to bring us the 40 Best Cities for Singles and this is the criteria used to rank the 40 largest urbanized areas in mainland America in seven different categories:

  • number of singles
  • nightlife
  • culture
  • cost of living alone
  • job growth
  • online dating activity
  • and coolness – yes COOLNESS.

I would have thought ‘coolness’ would be a hard one to come up with a real definition for. But anyway, it makes for a worthwhile read and here’s the link

and by the way in case you’re in a hurry, Atlanta scored 1st overall, “because of its hopping nightlife, relatively high number of singles and sizzling job growth”. So if you feel like maximizing your chances, hop on over to Atlanta for a quick sortie. Do let us know how you go now, won’t you!

Overall San Francisco rated second thanks to it’s coolness and culture factors, but New York won the ‘cool’ bit hands down with its ‘coolometer’ reading.

I bet you can’t wait to see how your City rates and in what areas! Do check it out and if there’s a reported mass exodus from Jacksonville, Providence and  Salt Lake City, I know nothing!!!

Are you SHI tonight? If you are you’re best off trying Atlanta FIRST!