Almanac Short Story: Disservice with a smile

by Barry Mitchell


Life has become so complicated we’re going backwards at a rate of knots . Good old fashioned service has been reduced to call centres based on the other side of the world . So now success, if you have a problem, is whether you can repeat your password or follow up PIN number. You then get hand-balled  from consultant to manager and back again repeating your numbers and passwords ad nauseum . You then luckily get to recount your story the same amount of times as you change practitioners. It is a brilliant tactic by large communication providers as they bore you into submission. As this process is occurring your frustration levels go to new highs much like a bull stockmarket. After some very clever and well-rehearsed abuse, to people who probably don’t understand the mirth or on the other end of the phone laughing amongst one another while pointing at the phone, you give up in humiliation. You then ring your local shop who advise you that there is no consultant to speak to at the present time.


“Why can’t I speak  to you?” you stupidly ask.


“Have you tried going to the website?” She asks with a hint of boredom and superiority in her voice .


“No I haven’t and I don’t want to!” You exclaim also with a hint of frustration and anger.


“Well , you’ll have to come into the centre,” she replies as though she hasn’t the time to deal with such trivial matters.


“I haven’t got all day to be driving in to shops to get some basic service.”


Now that’s a good one .


“Is there anything else we can’t help you with today?” she replies in a passive aggressive tone.


“Ahhhhhhh,” you reply.


On entering the “centre” after fighting over a parking space that you saw first but were gazumped by a little old lady doing her I’m helpless routine, your problem is fixed within 30 seconds.


You recount your ordeal to the staff at hand who yawn and stare into the distance catching a gaze of the time clock as they consider what they will have for lunch.


“The same thing happens to me.”


They try to pacify you with as though to say listen pal you’re not the only one on this earth with problems with telecommunications companies.


As I drive off I give the old lady the bird.



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