Recently I wrote a column about the problems people encounter when they decide to move from one house to another. Mainly the time and money you waste in fixing up your new house after you’ve fixed up and sold the old one. Those problems unfortunately are not your only difficulties encountered in making such a move. Most of your time after you finally get everything over to your new location, is spent waiting on hold with Customer Service.
You’ll end up sitting with your phone, surrounded by hundreds of cardboard boxes packed by strangers, each box containing an average 1 ½ items – perhaps a soap dish and a partially used tube of toothpaste – wadded up inside 25,00 feet of packing paper. Virtually every box will be labeled with some mutant spelling of the word miscellaneous. You will not be able to find ANYTHING. For example, in my last move I was pretty sure that before I moved, I had a pet parrot. (I’m just kidding, of course. The movers and I knew exactly where the Parrot was. It was inside one of those boxes.)
My point, which I am hoping to get to before we reach the end of the column, is that because you chose to move, you’ll have to change all of your essential services – the electrical service the propane service, the water service, the cable TV service, the beer keg delivery service, etc. – and naturally because all these companies involved use sophisticated computer systems, none of these services will end up working correctly in your new house. Imagine having to plug a lamp into your water faucet or watching Duck Dynasty reruns on your toaster.
Anyway, all you will do for days, weeks it seems, is listening to the snappy “lite” elevator music they play while you wait and wait for the next available Customer Service Agent. My call was important to them. They would tell me this many times in a sincere recorded message. They couldn’t wait to serve me! They would answer my call just as soon as they finished serving the entire Western United States. But isn’t there some way that we can solve this endless waiting problem.
That’s when I got this great idea. You know those telemarketing people who always call you at dinner time? You know the ones who never come right out and say they’re selling something. “This is just a courtesy call to ask if you would like to save fifty percent or more on your long-distance phone bill.” I always say no. I tell them that I’ve always wanted a big long-distance bill. I tell them that if my bill isn’t high enough to suit me, I deliberately set fire to a large pile of cash. Then I hang up. But this of course does not stop them. The next night they call back that’s how courteous they are.
So here’s my idea: On the one hand, we have telemarketing people constantly calling us, despite the fact everyone hates them, and nobody in the history of the world has ever bought anything from them; and on the other hand when we want to reach Customer Service, we can never get through. Obviously what needs to be done is we need to round up all the employees in the telemarketing departments, march them over to Customer Service, and order them to step over the bodies of the Customer Service employees, all of whom apparently passed away years ago, and have them ANSWER THE PHONE, OKAY, because the cable reception on my toaster sucks.