Sunday, October 14, 2012

A Complaint is a Gift...or the Art of Haute Kvetching

On October 4th, following a disappointing trip to the Bronx Zoo with Big Babe and his lady love, I dashed off the following letter of complaint:
Dear Bronx Zoo,
I cannot believe that I am writing to you -- one of my favorite NYC venues -- to let you know how disappointed I was at my most recent visit....which was this past Sunday, September 30th.
Arriving at the zoo around 3 pm with my son and girlfriend -- who live in Berlin -- we were presented with two levels of payment: basic and the all-encompassing exorbitant fee, which included rides and special exhibitions.
We decided that as we had about two and a half hours, the basic fee would suffice.
Sadly, because so many important attractions are now behind a paywall -- and other exhibitions were just empty -- we saw pathetically little for our $16 admission per person.
The zoo does, however, have a new Disney kind of look. It seems that Halloween cannot arrive early enough...with all the spooky decorations....more than a month before Halloween itself.
I call that cheap and infuriating.
Your patrons would prefer fewer gravestones and more animals.
And speaking of gravestones, unless you pay through the nose, it seems that the average person's trip to the Bronx Zoo is going to be kind of...dead.
How can you address this problem?
First off...I believe you have an obligation to inform the public at the entrance if key exhibitions are closed or under renovation. Signs at the entrance heralding the closing of an iconic exhibition such as the Monkey House would have been greatly appreciated. Even the Zoo employee outside the building agreed that it was not fair to patrons as he absorbed our shock and disappointment when we arrived to find a "Closed for Renovation" sign on the building.
But that was hardly the only problem.