I just had a lovely phone conversation that I’d like to share with y’all. Details may have been embellished because funny.
The setup: After unsuccessfully trying to update my profile info on the pet microchip website (strike one), I looked for an email address to seek help. There was none (strike two). I was forced to make a phone call and wait on hold for several minutes. The following conversation was the strike three.
Lady: Hello, how may I help you?
Me: Hi, I tried to update my profile info on your website but couldn’t. Can you please help?
Lady: Sure, just let me get some info from you. (She gets it from me.) Ok, so for this you’ll have to fax in a copy of your change-of-name document and we’ll get that changed for you.
Me: Fax?! Really? What year is this?
Lady: 2015, ma’am.
Me: Exactly. Fax machines should have all self-destructed by now. Can’t I just email you a picture of it?
Lady: Oh…sure, I guess you could do that. Send it to: firstname.lastname@example.org
Me: Why couldn’t you have just put this information on your website instead of making me call and wait on hold?
Lady: Oh that would be too easy. See, we need to be sure that our customers are worthy of our services and love their pets enough to call and wait on hold.
Lady: Also, I see here that you owe a balance on your account. The first year of this service was free, but every year after that there’s a fee. You could either pay $20 to secure your membership for the next year or just pay $283655673 for a lifetime membership. Since your precious little kitty is so young, I recommend the lifetime membership. Would you like to take care of that today?
Me: Uh, what? We’ve never paid membership fees.
Lady: Oh, well we don’t send out bills.
Me: Then how do you collect fees? Via carrier pigeon? Telepathically? Or maybe the lost animals do it!!!
Lady: We send you a reminder email, or when you call us we remind you.
Me: Wow, so you do try to use email? Why wouldn’t you try and fax me first? I never once got an email or fax from you. Or a carrier pigeon.
Lady: Maybe it went to your spam folder or you deleted it since you hate the animals.
Me: Yeah, no. Unlike you, I actually understand how emailing works. And billing, for that matter. So why isn’t my online account closed since we’ve never paid you a dime?
Lady: I can’t answer that question because I am incompetent.
Me: Ok, so…if my cat had gone missing one year ago and someone found her, would you still have called me even though we’ve never paid?
Lady: Oh yes. We would never not reunite you with your animal. We love an-
Me: You love animals, yes. I get it. So what you’re telling me is that this is a free service.
Lady: No, it’s not. You have a balance due. Would you like to take care of this today?
Me: No. No, I would not. You just go take care of those animals while I go all Office Space on my fax machine. Oh wait. That’s right.