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Thou Shalt Pay On Time

, , , , | Right | March 4, 2010

(I work in the financial aid department of a private Christian college.)

Me: “Hello, thank you for calling [University] today. How may I help you?”

Caller: “Yes, I’d like to complain about a late charge on my daughter’s bill. It shouldn’t be there.”

Me: “All right, give me just one moment while I pull up your daughter’s account. I see that payment was not received until a week after the due date.”

Caller: “I know, but I shouldn’t be charged a late fee.”

Me: “I’m sorry, sir, but our late fee policy was explained to you when you enrolled in our payment program and is also printed on the bottom of your monthly statements.”

Caller: “But you’re still a Christian university, right?”

Me: “Yes, sir, but to avoid late charges you must pay your bill on time.”

Caller: “Nonsense. The Bible talks about this. Y’all are supposed to be Christians!”


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SIMBY: Snots In My Back Yard

, , , , | Right | November 30, 2009

Me: “Campus Security, this is [My Name].”

Caller: “Hi, I live across the street from you guys on [street name], and there is a lot of litter on your property near where I live. I’m feeling very threatened by it! It’s bringing the property values down and attracting the wrong kind of people.”

Me: “Okay, I’ll call Buildings and Grounds and have them go out and check for it.”

Caller: “Thank you, because it’s really threatening!”

Me: “Not a problem, ma’am.”

(The caller hangs up and I call over to Buildings and Grounds, who agrees to look into it. Immediately after I hang up with them, my phone starts ringing again.)

Me: “Campus Security, this is [My Name].”

Caller: “Hi, it’s me again. I just called you.”

Me: “Yes, ma’am. I called Buildings and Grounds and they’re going out to look for the litter.”

Caller: “Oh, good. I just called to tell you that there’s a group of little people out there and I think they might be responsible for the litter.”

Me: “…little people?”

Caller: “Yeah, there’s a big group of them. It’s a problem!”

Me: “Alright, ma’am. I will go out and see what’s up.”

(When I arrive at the location, what do I find? Teachers, parents, and a videographer watching a group of kids foraging through the grass: it was an Easter egg hunt by the on-campus daycare center.)

When Open Source Meets Closed Minds

, , , , , | Right | November 26, 2009

Caller: “I need to report a very serious computer crime! The local university is running an illegal computer system!”

Me: “Could you please repeat that?”

Caller: “The local university is running an illegal computer system! They’ve hacked it!”

Me: “How could you tell they’d hacked it?”

Caller: “Well, when it booted, it didn’t say Windows or Microsoft or anything! It said something about Deviant Linux, I think, and the main screen looked nothing like my good, legal Windows screen at home! I think they hacked that, too!”

Me: “Do you mean Debian Linux?”

Caller: “Yes, that! Is it some sort of computer mafia or something?”

Me: “Uh, no, it’s just a different operating system. Nothing to worry about.”

Caller: “But it’s illegal! It’s not Microsoft, not even Windows! They’re on a normal Microsoft computer, so they’re breaking the law! I think they stole my identity when I came in the building! I’m calling the FBI!” *hangs up*

Your Improv Needs Improvement

, , , , | Right | November 18, 2009

(I work at my university calling alumni for donations. The person who picks up has a normal American accent.)

Caller: “Hello?”

Me: “Hi, may I please speak with [Name]?”

Caller: “Who is this?”

Me: “This is [My Name] from [University].”

(Suddenly, the caller changes his voice to a thick, supposedly foreign accent. It’s obvious it’s the same person.)

Caller: “He not here now.”

Me: *playing along* “Oh, okay. Do you know a better time for me to reach him?”

Caller: *still using accent* “No, no. He not here! If he needs to sign a form, send them to his work.”

Me: “Okay. Well, thanks for taking the time to speak with me. Have a great evening!

Caller: *back to an American accent* “You, too!”

Helping The Needy

, , , , | Learning | October 31, 2009

(To make the day more interesting, I am asking the prospective students about their Halloween.)

Me: “So how was your Halloween? Did you dress up?”

Student Caller: “I was Spock, of course.”

Me: “Awesome. Live long and prosper.”

Student Caller: “The needs of the many…”

Me: “…are greater than the needs of the few.”

Student Caller: “Or the one.”

*long pause*

Student Caller: “Marry me?”

Me: “Excuse me?”

Student Caller: “What, is this moving too fast for you? Okay, how about a date? Coffee? I can be there in four hours!”

Me: “Uhh… I don’t think this is appropriate. If you have any questions, you can call the office of admissions-”

Student Caller: “Wait! I need to tell my mom I’ve met the future Mrs. Finkler!”