Quote of the day...er...week...umm...hey, look, a quote!!

"...besides love, independence of thought is the greatest gift an adult can give a child." - Bryce Courtenay, The Power of One

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Wednesday, January 18, 2012

A Letter

Dear AT&T,

A long while ago I had an account with your competitor, a carrier that was well known for having excellent customer service and competitive rates. I was happy with my cell phone company.

As with all good things, though, it came to an end when you bought them out. I was not delighted.

I stuck with you, although it was more from habit than from any sort of desire to be loyal. Honestly, it felt more like deciding the least horrid of the lot.

I will admit that you have surprised me over the years - your customer service and tech support people have gone above and beyond on many occasions...once I could reach them. May I suggest that you market your automated phone system to Guantanamo Bay and other places where prisoners of war are being tortured? It believe it would be most effective. Or, if that does not appeal, you could use it as a sort of psychological test. I am certain many interesting things can be revealed about one's personality if you recorded one as they spoke to the recordings. Or am I the only one who talks back to the computer?

May I also note the irony of telling a customer they can look up and/or deal with their bill online when they cannot, in fact, get online to begin with and that's why they are calling? Also, I am aware that I have called AT&T - never once have I suddenly cried out "Oh, my goodness, I thought I was holding for the Lottery Commission! How silly I feel!!" I don't need reminding every few seconds. Neither do I need to hear you tell me my call will be answered in the order it was received. I've always wondered why companies feel the need to tell us this - is there a company out there that is answering calls randomly, then?

I have had wonderful experiences in your stores, too, although I must say I get little frowny lines on my face when I am told I must pay an extra fee for using that archaic cash to pay bills. Cash is instant, hard currency, irreversible, unarguable - unlike a credit card on which charges can be argued for years before payment (if any) is finally made. So why penalize me for using it??

Lately, you have turned off my cell phone and Internet*. I don't blame you - you do actually expect to be paid occasionally for your service and I didn't keep up my end of that bargain (silly me - how could I think toilet paper and cat food were more important than my beloved Blue Nowhere??), so I understand completely your sudden cessation of service.

That said, I do wonder what you were thinking when you called me last night.

Really, AT&T, you want me to sign up for DSL? I was under the impression that I was not at all a desirable customer, but your employee (if her bruised, battered, broken, thoroughly demoralized English was to be understood) said otherwise. She exhorted me to sign up for DSL...or maybe she was telling me to go to Hell. Or perhaps she was saying I should ring a bell. Or that her feet were starting to swell. I'm not certain - I don't know that she actually knew what she was saying. I am half convinced she was reading something phonetically for two cents an hour and all the Aloo Kachori** she can stomach.

Here's a hint - if you really want me to to purchase a product or service, try making certain that the person selling it speaks the same language that I do. I can muddle along in a few languages, especially if I use them all together in one sentence, but I am primarily an English speaker. Yes, yes, insert your favorite elitist jokes here, but the truth is, there are what? thousands? millions? of languages in the world (including dialects and patois)? Is it really reasonable to expect that I speak/comprehend more than four or five at once? And you called me, after all - so it would behoove you to do me the simple courtesy of attempting to fleece me in my language of origin. For the record, I am fluent in both English and Bad English, with fair vocabularies in Slang, Typo, and Gibberish as well.

In addition, given the state of the economy and my distinct lack of employment (despite a shocking amount of effort on my part...although, if I am being honest, ANY effort on my part is a shock to those who know me, because I haven't worked in some 20 years for one reason or another, and am not terribly good at being employed anyway), having someone who is clearly not working inside the boundaries of the nation (let alone state) in which I reside, call me to sell me something displays a lack of wisdom on your part. Outsourcing is not MY friend, as I am not share holder in your company, and I am disinclined to reward it with my custom.

Clearly one branch of your company is not aware of how the other branches are bending in the breeze...and you a communications company! Save yourself two cents and a bowl of curry and quit calling customers that you've cut off in the first place.

Thank you - and by the way, it will be a minute before I can pay what I owe you, but I fully intend to as soon as I sell one of T's kidneys when he's not looking.


* Which is why I am once again borrowing Mum's.

**I am not bashing anyone, here...just playing on the fact that the woman was quite obviously Indian, and, at the same time, enthusiastically unable to speak even basic English but delighted to be giving it the old college try all the same.

1 comment:

SHARON said...

Too funny!!! And, sadly, oh so true.