Monday, June 05, 2006

Blood in the Water

I received a phone call two days ago from a person asking for my husband by name, but she did not identify herself or her organization.
"He's not available. May I take a message?"
"No thanks I'll try back later."
Yesterday, a nice young gentleman requested my husband again by name and also did not identify his organization or purpose for the call. Once again, I advised that he was not available. I was thanked and hung up.
Today, a young lady called and once again simply requested my husband by name. So, very politely, I indicate that my husband is not available and is there something I can help her with?
She asks me," Are you authorized to make decisions regarding your phone service?"
I reply slowly "Well, since I've been married this individual 17 years, bore him 2 children, my name is jointly on the mortgage and I make twice his income, I do believe that qualifies me to make decisions regarding our phone service."
She hesitates a moment - almost like she's trying to decide whether I'm joking or I'm trouble. (We can all see at this point, the odds are clearly NOT in her favor, but the poor young lass makes the wrong choice.....)
"and your name is...." she coos sweetly.
"Well, Yna, my name is Melody and I'll only take a moment of your time, but I just want to review the services you have with us and see if I can save you some money on your phone bill today. Would you like to save some money today, Yna?"
"Well, who wouldn't?"
"I'm so glad to hear you say that. Now it says here that you have our best home service package with line blocker, call waiting and caller ID - that's great..... and you have an unpublished number..... and DirectTV service with us.... and the fastest DSL service we offer.... well, the only thing missing here is wireless phone service.. can I interest you in adding wireless service today? We have the follow specials going on for a limited time....."
I try to be nice. I really do. I usually give folks 3 chances.
"No thank you, I'm happy with my current wireless provider"
"Well, if you switch plans I can save you an additional $5 a month on your phone bill." Strike 1.
"But you are going to charge me an additional $40 per month to get the same service I currently have with another provider so that I can save $5, is that correct?"
"Well, it appears that way, Yna. I'd like to tell you about our home phone system specials we have going on..."
I cut her off mid-sentence. "I wouldn't be interested today, thank for calling."
"I can get you a professional-grade home phone system for pennies on the dollar, Yna."Strike 2.
"No, thank you. I wouldn't be interested."
"The best thing about this system is...."Strike 3. You've gone too far, sweetie.
"Melody, do you still have my account up on your system?"
"Why yes, yes I do"
"Can we review a couple of items - just for my sake?"
"Why certainly, Yna, what can I do for you?"
"Can you find the line item where I pay an additional fee to have an unpublished phone number?"
"Yes, I see it right here."
"Good deal. Now, can you see the additional features I have on my home phone service?"
"Yes, I certainly can."
"Do you see where I have a solicitation block on my home phone number so that when anyone who's phone number doesn't register on caller ID calls my phone they hear a No Solicitors message first before they can connect?"
"Yes, I see that right here, is there a problem with your service?"
"Yes, as a matter of fact there is..." my mouth waters as I flash my incisors - smelling blood in the water.... "The reason that I pay EXTRA money for an unpublished number and I have a solicitation block on my phone is so that phone solicitors don't call me at home. Why do you people at the phone company think that you are exempt from this? Do you think that just because you have ACCESS to my phone number that gives you the right - over every other business on the planet - to call me and try to sell me crap I don't want or need? Do you really think that I won't be as annoyed with you as I would be with ANY OTHER company who calls me uninvited during my personal time? I would expect that the PHONE COMPANY would understand customers frustration and disgust with phone solicitors MORE THAN any other company!!! That's why you offer these services for a premium price!!! Then why on God's green earth does your company STILL EMPLOY PHONE SOLICITORS to call people who have already purchased your anti-phone-solicitation services?!!!!! Huh? Answer me that, won't you, Melody?!!!!!" I'm heaving and sputtering by this time and little beads of sweat have pooled on my upper lip.
Tick tock.
"I'm sorry to have bothered you, ma'am, you have a nice day."
I hang up the phone and pause to savor the moment. There are very few times in my life where I have actually thought up something clever to say on the spot - and then had the nerve to say it out loud. This was one of those times.
posted by Yna @ 9:55 PM |


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