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  • Swearing You Into A Job
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  • How To Win The War Against Telemarketers, Part 3

    | IL, USA | Extra Stupid, Family & Kids, Language & Words, Top

    (For some reason, I’ve been getting angry phone calls meant for someone else from an internet provider. My aunt and uncle from Oman are currently visiting when the phone rings.)

    Me: “Oh… it’s [ISP] again. I’ve told them to take me off their list a dozen times.”

    Aunt: “Try again. Maybe if you tell them—”

    Uncle: “No. Let me.”

    (My uncle answers the phone.)

    Uncle: *in Arabic* “Good evening, you insane person.”

    Caller: “Hi. I’m calling on behalf of [ISP]. We need to speak with [Name] at [other address] concerning—”

    Uncle: *still speaking Arabic* “Why do you not listen? He is not here! I am in a kitchen! The bananas are not ripe yet. My nephew’s cat does not like me! Soccer is fun to watch. My ears are on fire! My face is made of coins! There are clocks all over the ceiling.”

    Caller: *click*

    (They gave up after two more similar calls!)

    How To Win The War Against Telemarketers, Part 2
    How To Win The War Against Telemarketers

    The Cable Guy Ignores The Cable

    | Berkeley, CA, USA | Employees, Ignoring/Inattentive, Technology, Top

    (I call my ISP to report that tree branches brought down the cable TV/internet line from the pole on the street to my house. They send a tech with a ten-foot folding ladder.)

    Me: “Why didn’t they send someone with one of those trucks with the lift arm? I was pretty specific in describing what the problem was.”

    Cable Guy: “We assumed that it was probably a problem with your router. Have you tried rebooting it?”

    Me: “No. I haven’t. I’m 100 percent certain that the problem has to do with the 40 feet of cable line lying in my front yard that used to be attached to the top of that pole up there.”

    Cable Guy: “Well, I can’t fix that. You should have reported this when you called [ISP].”

    Me: “I did. What does your paperwork say?”

    Cable Guy: *looking at laptop in van* “It says that the cable from the street to the house was detached due to falling branches. But like I said, we thought it was your router…”

    In An Email Dominated Society

    | UK | Employees, Ignoring/Inattentive, Liars/Scammers, Technology

    (As a result of a technical problem with my internet installation and astonishingly poor customer service following that, I have been trying to get an answer out of this company for three weeks. On twelve separate occasions they have promised me a call back and then ‘forgotten.’ I have called them four hours earlier. I was promised a callback within three hours, which I have not yet received. I have phoned them again.)

    Company Rep: “[Name] speaking. How can I help?”

    Me: “Hi. I rang four hours ago and was promised a call back within three hours from a manager and I haven’t heard anything. Please, could you find out what is happening?”

    (I provide the account info.)

    Company Rep: “I’m sorry you didn’t get a call back. I can see the request on our system but nothing since, and we close in an hour.”

    Me: “Yes, I know. That’s why I rang up four hours ago for a three hour call back. This is the thirteenth time this has happened, and I’m getting annoyed. Please get a manager on the phone.”

    Company Rep: “I’ll just see if he’s free. Please hold.”

    (Five minutes on hold ensues.)

    Company Rep: “I’m sorry. The manager is busy for the rest of the shift and won’t be able to call you tonight.”

    Me: “Okay. Could someone ring me in the morning then, please?”

    Company Rep: “I’m sorry. We can’t do that.”

    Me: “Er… what?”

    Company Rep: “You have to call up yourself on the day.”

    Me: “But I’m calling now because I haven’t had the callback I was promised. I shouldn’t have to keep using my time to chase up requests I’ve already made. Can you please just leave a message for the duty manager to ring me tomorrow?”

    Company Rep: “I can’t do a callback request for tomorrow. We’re not allowed to leave customer information on desks overnight.”

    Me: “I understand data security. I work with customer data. Send them a secure email.”

    Company Rep: “We don’t have email.”

    Me: *incredulous* “Really? So when I spoke to [Name] before and he read out what he was writing in the EMAIL and then told me when he hit the SEND button, he was lying, was he?”

    Company Rep: “Well, er…, what he meant was that he was typing it up and then printed it to leave on the manager’s desk.”

    Me: “And when I spoke to [Name] before that and he actually emailed me from his work account with an update, that was my imagination, was it?”

    Company Rep: “Well, err… I mean…”

    Me: “And do you actually expect me to believe that an international provider of telecommunications, including internet and email hosting services, doesn’t have its own email system and resorts to leaving notes on desks?”

    Company Rep: “I’ll… pass your message on now. Thanks for calling. Bye!”

    (The Company Rep hangs up. Unsurprisingly I continued not getting the callbacks I was promised. I ended up writing to the chief executive of the company. He was very interested to hear they supposedly didn’t have email.)

    Not Taking Account Of His Gender

    | UK | Bigotry, Bizarre/Silly, Employees, Ignoring/Inattentive, Technology, Themed Giveaway

    (Note: I am a female to male transgender person. My voice is very masculine, but companies can be slow to process my name change.)

    Me: “Hi there, I can’t seem to connect to my internet.”

    Tech: “Can I have the name on the account, please?”

    Me: “It’s [My Name].”

    Tech: “That is not the name on the account. Can I speak to the account holder?”

    Me: “Speaking. You must not have processed my name change yet. I used to be [Birth Name].”

    Tech: “But [Birth Name] is a girl’s name.”

    Me: “Yes, I’m a female to male transgender person.”

    Tech: “What? What’s that?”

    Me: “Well, I was assigned female at birth, but I transitioned so I’m male now.”

    Tech: “What you’re describing is impossible.”

    Me: “Right… well… can I get some help with my internet or not?”

    Tech: “Not unless I can speak to the account holder.”

    Me: “Okay, can I speak to someone again to get my name changed on the system?”

    Tech: “Not unless I can speak to the account holder.”

    Me: *sighs*

    Some Take It More Seriously Than Others

    | MI, USA | Bosses & Owners, Employees, Ignoring/Inattentive, Technology

    (A routine call has turned into a nightmare. It requires new wiring, new equipment, and a bunch of software changes. After 12 hours at the job-site, and 16 hours on the clock, I go back to the office to find the boss still waiting for me.)

    Boss: “I just got a call from the customer. He was really impressed that you were able to get everything back up before the night shift started, and he wants to throw a pile of business our way.”

    Me: “Sounds great. Listen, can we talk about this tomorrow? The only reason I’m still standing is two gallons of bad coffee.”

    Boss: “We’ll talk about it on Monday. Give me your company phone so I can cover any emergencies. You have a nice and quiet three-day weekend.”

    (I go home and pass out, only to be woken by my personal cell phone at 3 am.)

    Coworker: “Hey, I just got an alert. Is your company cell dead? The UPS at—”

    (I explain that the boss should be handling it, turn my cell-phone to silent, and go back to sleep. At 5 am, my house phone starts ringing.)

    Coworker: “I can’t get a hold of the boss. I’ve tried the office, his cell, your company cell, the on-call cell, his house, and, well, I’m still getting alerts. Would you mind letting me in to the office so I can fix it?”

    (Pretty annoyed, I get dressed and drive to the office. When I arrive, the front door to the office is unlocked, all the lights are on, and I can hear ‘The Doors’ blaring from the PA. The conference room contains my boss, his wife—who is also the company lawyer—and four people I don’t recognize. They are all drinking and laughing.)

    Boss: *to me* “Hey! The hero of the hour has returned. I’d like you to meet [Company Owner] and his night management.” *to everyone else* “Everyone, this is the fellow that spent all day yesterday saving your bacon.”

    (My boss then gestures to the drinks they have been having.)

    Boss: “Sit down, and have a drink. We were just discussing some more work that needs to be done, and I’d like to get your input.”

    Me: “[Boss], can I talk to you a moment in your office? We’ve got a minor issue with one of the UPS systems, and [Coworker] couldn’t reach you. He’s meeting me here, but—”

    (My boss starts laughing, and turns to the company owner.)

    Boss: “I told you we take everything seriously, [Company Owner]. Remember the cell phone alerts I showed you a little while ago? When I didn’t shut them off, two of my best guys took it upon themselves to come out and investigate!” *to me* “What are you drinking?”

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