This has been a terrible week. From start to finish. And I’m not thinking at a high level so I don’t want to see what happens when I elaborate. Let’s just say that all of my efforts to resuscitate it were met with all the success of the Challenger mission. The efforts, of course, would be the shuttle and its launch rockets, while I would be the horrified onlookers, elation deflated with the explosion in the air.
But the icing on the cake was a letter that I just received from A&M Reforestation. Before today, one of this week’s few highlights was that I managed to wrangle not only a reply but some sort of (I thought) payment out of the company that I spent two and a half 60-hour weeks planting trees for. Of course I was wrong. The only thing even remotely promising now is the sheer illegality of their response.
Not only did they fail to make good on a contract they drafted, based upon the laws of this province, and not “reward” my time with at least minimum wage, they felt the need to funnel the rest of my money away with some kind of dubious “equipment rental fee”. Dubious because we asked Paul, the owner, what this was going to be the day we had to leave and he responded, somewhat shiftily, with “I haven’t decided yet”. Well good news! It turns out to be EXACTLY what they would’ve owed me! $171.80! I’m so glad that I left when I did, because if I had planted a box less of trees that envelope would have held a bill.
I love how a quick search of the internet reveals that the price for this equipment (a bag and a shovel) comes to be almost exactly as much as I paid for what amounted to two-weeks of rental. And wherever they bought them, they bought them wholesale. I also like how this fee doesn’t include the $100 equipment deposit which was just swallowed up indiscriminately. And I know we didn’t buy them because we tried to take them home and they wouldn’t let us.
I don’t know if I should fight it. They for sure owe me what they didn’t account for. But that might be it. I think there’s something in the contract about setting the price for the rentals at a later date, but I’m not sure how legal that is. I have a feeling that even if it is the deposit can be knocked off the rental fee because they didn’t account for that either. Or give it back.
My favourite part of this whole thing is that I don’t think it’s an isolated incident. The sense I got from their Sudbury office was that they weren’t even planning on sending even this explanation, to save on postage. They made up some lame story about thinking that I lived in Dundas, which doesn’t make any sense. I gave them no address but my Toronto and Caledon ones, on countless forms which they must have somewhere. I’m surprised they didn’t consult them, instead deciding to, you know, make it up.
In camp a lot of people didn’t think they were getting (or entitled to) anything if they quit, which was ridiculous because not only is that illegal, it’s not what the contract said. A lot of people didn’t read it, and those that did misinterpreted it. But I think they were nudged into believing something other than the truth through the staff at A&M, I remember being told similar things when I first expressed the desire to quit. I could go on and on, but I won’t. I don’t want to. I just think that it’s fair to say that their business model is cynical and dishonest, and that they must be used to people not calling them on it.