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    Category: Technology

    The realm of Technical Support is there to provide expert assistance to those who are not so tech-savvy. Although they still expect you to know what a computer is, and how to turn it on, and to know that you can’t ‘fix the internet’ because it isn’t pretty enough. You have been warned…

    Laptop Flop, Part 6

    | USA | Extra Stupid, Technology

    (I work as a computer tech for a major university that has a contract with a government agency. The laptops issued to the government agents are standard except for the software. We try to diagnose and repair everything over the phone, and when we can’t resolve the problem, the customers are required to ship the laptops to us.)

    Me: “[Organization]. This is [My Name].”

    Customer: “Yeah, I accidentally spilled some soda into my laptop keyboard.”

    Me: “Okay.”

    Customer: “So I shut it off immediately, but the keys were all sticky.”

    Me: “Okay, so we—”

    Customer: “So I decided that I would run it through the dishwasher.”

    Me: “You what?”

    Customer: “So yeah, I figured it wouldn’t hurt anything if I didn’t turn it on right away, while it was still wet.”

    Me: “So, your laptop is—”

    Customer: “Well, I didn’t want to wait for it to dry. So I figured I could use a blow dryer on it.”

    (A blow dryer typically heats up to less than 160 degrees F or about 71 degrees C.)

    Me: “So the laptop needs—”

    Customer: “But I didn’t actually have a blow dryer, I only had a heat gun.”

    (Heat guns are shop and industrial tools used to melt plastics, solder, and a host of other things, often generating heat in the 1100 degrees F [about 600 C] range. Keyboards can melt at temperatures as low as 200 degrees F/93 degrees C.)

    Me: “So, you need to—”

    Customer: “So, the whole middle of the laptop is melted. Do you think I need to send it in?”

    Me: *sigh* “Yes, just ship it to us, we will ship a replacement.”

    Related:
    Laptop Flop, Part 5
    Laptop Flop, Part 4
    Laptop Flop, Part 3

    Electronic Moronic

    | Augusta, GA, USA | Crazy Requests, Technology, Theme Of The Month

    (I work at a big box electronics store, which is all we sell, and am answering the phones.)

    Me: “Thank you for calling [Store]. This is [My Name]. How may I help you?”

    Caller: “I need your electronics department.”

    Me: “Yes, ma’am. Which section?”

    Caller: “Your electronics department.”

    Me: “We are only an electronics store, ma’am. Did you need computers, TVs, phones?”

    Caller: “Electronics, please. I have already told you this.”

    Me: “Yes, and as I have said we only sell electronics and I need to know what you are looking for.”

    Caller: “Godd*** it, I already told you. Electronics!”

    Me: “Please hold.”

    (I place the customer on hold and turn to a coworker.)

    Me: “Answer this and just say electronics so we can find out what she needs.”

    A Case Of Case Stupidity

    | NY, USA | At The Checkout, Extra Stupid, Technology

    (I work as a cashier at a well known game store. A husband, wife, and child come up to the register and I ring up the game they want. Note that we only display cases and not the games.)

    Me: “Your total is [total].”

    (The man pays, while the wife opens up the empty game case she has been holding.)

    Wife: “Where is the game?”

    Me: “Excuse me, ma’am?”

    Wife: “My husband just paid for the game and the game is not in here.”

    (She holds open the display case pointing inside.)

    Me: “Ma’am, those cases are for display only. I put the game in the bag with the receipt.”

    Wife: “NO! He paid for this game and it is not in here. I want this game.”

    Me: *I show her the sealed game from the bag* “See, ma’am, the game is right here and sealed.”

    Wife: “You shouldn’t have these things here if you don’t put games in them right when we pay.”

    (The family then leaves. I turn to my assistant manager.)

    Me: “Did she really think we magically send the game into an empty case?”

    Assist. Manager: “Yep, and we will be getting a call about it later, too. Watch.”

    (Sure enough, right before closing the wife called the store to complain about the game not showing up in the case she was holding.)

    Fixed With A Male-To-Female Adaptor

    | ON, Canada | Bigotry, Technology

    (I work tech support at an inbound call center for a fairly large ISP. A lot of customers get transferred by sales agents when they select the wrong option. I’m female.)

    Me: “Thank you for calling [Company]. My name is [My Name]. How can we help you?”

    Elderly Caller: “Oh, hello, dear. I’m just waiting for a tech support man.”

    Me: “Yes, ma’am. I’m tech support! How can I help?”

    Elderly Caller: “Oh no, no, honey. I’m sure there will be a tech support man along to help me shortly. I don’t mind waiting on hold.”

    (After a few minutes of attempting to get her information and assuring I can help, I finally resolve the issue and we say goodbye. A few hours later I get an email from a coworker who had spoken to the same woman. He transcribed a message she insisted get to me that read as follows:)

    Message: “Please tell [my Name] that she fixed all the problems I had and I didn’t mean to be rude. I didn’t even know women were allowed to work tech support so it’s not my fault!”

    Returns From The Dead

    , | Pasadena, MD, USA | Crazy Requests, Money, Technology, Transportation

    (At the auto parts store I work for we offer free battery charging for any car/truck/boat batteries as long as they do not test bad.)

    Customer: “I’d like to get this battery charged please.”

    Me: “Okay, let me just test it real quick.”

    (This battery looks like crap, but it’s not leaking so I go ahead and test it.)

    Me: “I’m sorry, but this battery is not good. It has a bad cell in it. I can’t charge it.”

    Customer: “What do you mean it’s bad?! This battery is pretty much new. You need to charge anyway.”

    Me: “Not gonna happen. It is actually dangerous if I try to charge this.”

    Customer: “I demand you charge this right NOW!”

    Me: “No. Your battery is dead; no amount of charging is going to bring it back. You will need to get a replacme—”

    Customer: “I SAID, CHARGE IT!”

    Me: “No.”

    Customer: “Well, I demand to—”

    Me: “I am the manager. I will NOT charge this battery. It has a bad cell, and there is no way this battery is anywhere near new. Judging by the inch worth of grease around the case and the ungodly level of corrosion on the terminals, I would say this battery is at least 7-8 years old. And If I were to attempt to charge this over sized paperweight, there is a chance it could explode and cause serious damage to the people around it.”

    Customer: “But—”

    Me: “No.”

    Customer: “But—”

    Me: “Not happening.”

    Customer: “Crap… but I can’t afford a new battery.”

    Me: “Look, give me a chance to check the back. We do have a used battery program, and I may have one in stock.”

    (I walk in the back and find a used battery that fits the customer’s car.)

    Me: “I found this one in the back. Now it is classified as used, but that just means that someone returned a battery with no problems to it, but we can no longer sell it new.”

    Customer: *brightens* “Really? How much?”

    Me: “$43.”

    Customer: “Really? That’s great! I was worried that I was going to have to spend hundreds on a new battery. Thank you so much!” *buys battery and leaves*

    Me: *to coworker* “Why do people always demand we bring dead things back to life?”

    Coworker: “I don’t know, but let me know when you figure out how to do that.”

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