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The Thread
Act XIX ~ Scene Two

Mrs. Birdfish

Dear Miss Blue,

I would like you to remember back to when you were first ordering your live rock. Just think back for a moment, with a clear head to our first e-mail communication.

Your message stated the following:

"I am going to be ordering the Ultra Fiji Premium Large pieces. ... I would like some Large pieces, but also maybe some smaller ones."

Now, what did I tell you when I responded? Okay, in case you don't remember off-hand, I will refresh your memory for you ... I was very firm in what I said.

I told you that the ...
"Large Pieces are VERY large" ... remember?

I think you do remember, as you have stated recently the following:

"I informed the company of the size of my aquarium. A 40-gallon breeder. I asked for their advice on the rock to purchase. I was led to the smaller box of Fiji Ultra Premium. Not the large show pieces. That is what I am referring to when I say the smaller pieces."

I think your memory was refreshed by your dear friend LadyOctopus, as she and I had several e-mail correspondences last week ... and I sent her a copy of the e-mails between the two of us.

She had been under the impression that you were "recommended the box of small shapes, and that is what you purchased" ... so I sent her a copy of our e-mails in order to clarify this, as the "smaller" pieces that you ordered were only in RELATION TO the Fiji LARGE pieces we carry, which I explained to you were "very large" ... so what she had been feeling you ordered ("small shapes") actually was a misconception. We appreciate the time she took in trying to bridge the gap in communication.

You have asked what kind of research was done recently in regard to helping you ... some of this research and analysis was the retrieval of the actual correspondence record, which I located in attempting to clarify the situation with LadyOctopus.

The reason you were not contacted personally is because there was communication with LadyOctopus, who, in essence was representing you. Please do not take this personally, but we actually WERE addressing your issue.

LadyOctopus has explained that you are dissatisfied with the size and shape of your live rock, and, from your posts here, it is quite clear that the size and shape issue is at the forefront of your displeasure.

For those reading this, and, for the sake of this letter to you, Miss Blue, I will recap some of your comments made here. These comments are listed in the order in which they were made. In an effort to make myself more clear, I have capitalized the word "smaller" or "small" in all of your messages.

"I ordered the SMALLER sized rocks."

"I was supposed to get varied pieces in the order thank you. Some larger and some SMALLER."

"Yes when I ordered the SMALLER piece box I was told I'd get SMALLER pieces and maybe a few larger ones."

"What happened to my SMALLER pieces?"

"This just makes me want to cry." "I ordered SMALLER rocks.   =*(
"I was expecting SMALLER pieces from what I had asked them. I asked them what size box they recommended. The large show piece box, or the regular box. The regular box I was told would have SMALL, medium and maybe a large piece."

We cannot express to you how very sorry we are that you did not receive the size and shape of pieces you had in your mind.

If we had known that you wanted only SMALL pieces, we would have told you that we do not carry them, as we have to many people who come asking us for smaller sized rocks.

But, that's not what you said ... that's not what you said you wanted. As much as you would like to believe that you ordered "smaller" or "small" pieces, you did not.

I truly feel for you. Perhaps it was an enthusiastic mistake, perhaps you were thinking small as opposed to medium ... although that is not what I said.

If you were to think "small" at all, it could only be "smaller" ... as in RELATION to the Large pieces, which I told you were "very large" ... the next size down, or smaller, than "very large" is still large.

Just in case this was not absolutely clear to you, I re-stated this again in our second round of correspondence.

I will re-cap the entire correspondence here for you, with peripheral information in regard to shipping, etc. deleted so we can just focus on what was said in regard to size. I would also like to point out at this time that our website has always stated in regard to our Fiji live rock that "large pieces are not uncommon." We do not carry a selection of small pieces and they are not an option when placing your order.

Your Initial Inquiry:
"I am going to be ordering the Ultra Fiji Premium Large Pieces. ... I would like some Large pieces, but also maybe some smaller ones."

My Reply:
"The large pieces are very large ..."

Your Second Inquiry:
"If I ordered the other box of Fiji would I also get some larger pieces as well? Or should I just go with the Large? This is going in my 40 gallon breeder aquarium."

My Second Reply:
"As for the sizes within a regular versus large pieces box ... you would more than likely receive some larger sizes in the regular box ... a *mix of medium to medium-large* pieces. It would probably be better for you than the Large ..."

Since you initially were going to order the LARGE box; and since you stated at first that you would like some "LARGE pieces" ... and since I had explained to you that the "large pieces are very large," with your response persisting in "would I also get some larger pieces ... or should I just go with the large?" ... how in the world would I have ever got the feeling you wanted small pieces?

I clearly stated that with the regular box that you would "more than likely receive some larger sizes" ... I did say a mix of medium to medium-large, but I never said small. Nor, did I say "smaller" ... and even if I had used the word "smaller," it would have only been in relation to the Large, which I had stated were "very large."

Now, this may appear all rather redundant to you, but the point is that you have stated, over and over again that you did not get what your ordered ... that you ordered "small" or "smaller" pieces, and this simply is not the case.

Granted, we would have liked to have seen some more medium pieces (since that is what would have made you happy), and yes, more shapely pieces would have worked better for you ... it is because of this that we will do our best to help you, but not because you ordered "small" or "smaller" pieces.

For the purpose of this letter and for the readers here who may feel that the words small and smaller have no merit, I ask you only to read how many times one or both of these words have been stated in Miss Blue's repertoire.

Now, I don't mean to repeat myself, but I just want to make sure you understand that this was YOUR statement and not mine: "... I would like some Large pieces, but also maybe some smaller ones."

Yet, you have stated here the following ...
"I was told I'd get smaller pieces and maybe a few larger ones."

What was my answer to this when you were ordering? I said, "The large pieces are very large ..." in other words, large is "very large" ... so smaller than "very large" is still going to be large.

How do you expect us to feel when we read the following? ...

"This just makes me want to cry. I ordered smaller rocks."
"The regular box I was told would have small, medium and maybe a large piece," or "I was expecting smaller pieces ..."

We feel for you, truly we do.

You were expecting smaller pieces, we have no doubt about that now. But, it wasn't because of anything we told you.

And, we try to show as many examples of the Fiji live rock as we can on our website, but we can't possibly show them all. Each box is unique ... however, we do agree with you that the pieces you received are bulkier than you wanted or than what you were "expecting" ... but that has nothing to do with what you were told.

The truth is that you did not order either "small" or "smaller" pieces ... anything having to do with "smaller" was only in relation to "very large" ... which is still large, or, as I said, medium-large.

If we could just go forward from here, it would serve us both very well. However, it is our belief that it was first important to make sure that you understand what you ordered and that you did not order small pieces.

Perhaps now, with this knowledge, you will feel a little better about the situation.

Other issues in rectifying this situation will continue, but first and foremost, the basis of your order during the ordering process was put to the test with your statements and this needed to be clarified.

I apologize for the length of this letter, but, in all fairness to our customer and to the members of this forum, it seemed that this matter needed to be openly discussed.

Thank you.

Mrs. Birdfish

Continue to Act XIX - Scene Three