Just Lost Their Chemistry

, , , , | Working | February 20, 2014

(I am twenty years old and opening a new bank account. The account manager is trying to make small talk with me while the information processes. I should note that I appear to fit the “skinny blonde girl” stereotype.)

Manager: “So, are you in school?”

Me: “Yes. I just started my third year.”

Manager: “And what are you studying?”

Me: “I’m doing a double major in chemistry and physics.”

Manager: *stops typing and scrunches her face up a little* “Oh… wow. Really? Science? Are you sure that’s not too hard for you?”

Me: “Um, yes. I really enjoy it, and I seem to have a knack for it. I just aced a course on relativistic physics.”

Manager: “I didn’t expect you to say that. I expected something fluffy like interior decorating or fashion design. If you could excuse me for a second, I, uh, need to go get something from the back.”

(She walked away. Someone else came to finish up the paperwork as the original woman “was suddenly called away.”)


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Doing More Pharm Than Good

, , , , , | Working | May 31, 2013

(My daughter has a seizure disorder. We are a low-income family, and we get low-cost insurance through the state for her. However, because of this disorder, she has separate insurance through the state; the pharmacy knows this.)

Tech: “Um, okay, so we tried to run your daughter’s medication and it won’t go through.  We have to contact [Regular] insurance to see why it won’t go through.”

Me: “Wait, no… you have to run it through [Other] insurance. I called this in like three days ago, and you are now just calling me?! That is the medication she takes for her seizures. I am out, too, and I can’t have her miss a dose.”

Tech: “We did and it didn’t work. You can pay cash for it. That’s $54.99.”

Me: “Look, I am low income. I can’t afford something that expensive. Are you sure you ran it through the right insurance?”

Tech: “Uh, yeah. It’s not my fault you let your insurance lapse or something. You need to call [Regular] insurance and take care of it on your end or else pay cash.”

(I call my daughter’s regular insurance, who confirms my side of things. They call the pharmacy and get them to approve the medication. I call back but request to speak with a pharmacist directly.)

Me: “So, did it work this time?”

Pharmacist: “Yeah, it did. I’m sorry [Tech] was acting that way. She just didn’t want to run it on the other insurance because it takes a few more steps to make.”

Me: “Yeah, I know. I’ve heard this song and dance every month for the last three months and nothing has changed. Look, my kid was totally out of her seizure meds! She could have had a seizure because of your lack of calling me about it in a timely manner and making jump through hoops I don’t need to.”

Pharmacist: “Well, I’m really busy, and I can’t watch everything they do all the time.”

Me: “Wow, you just inspired me to take my business elsewhere and call corporate to complain.”

(Within two hours, my daughter’s prescriptions were transferred to another pharmacy where they DO take the time to run it correctly and call me if/when there is a problem. I recently went back into that first store to return something and there was an entirely new staff in the pharmacy. I hope these ones do actually care!)


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Breaking Bank

, , , , , , | Working | February 11, 2013

(I was recently made redundant at work and have had to cut back on expenses. I am paying off a cancelled credit card at about NZ$20 a week from my meagre unemployment insurance. At nine am once a fortnight, I receive phone calls from the bank which are unhelpful but relatively pleasant. Then, this happens…)

Me: “Hello?”

Employee: “Yes, this is [Employee] from the credit facility of [Bank]. Our records show that you have been paying off the amount which you owe at a rate of $20 each Friday of each week. ”

Me: “Yes, and as I have explained, I am unable to pay any more at present.”

Employee: “I understand, but why are you not paying a greater amount?”

Me: “Because I am unable to pay any more with my current expenses and earnings.”

Employee: “I understand that. So, you’ll be paying more from this week? The more you pay, the faster you will pay off the debt, and you want to do that or else your credit rating—”

Me: “—will be adversely affected. Yes, I understand that. The thing is, I don’t earn more than $320 total each week.”

Employee: “I understand that. We would expect that you paid a relatively small amount of your earning each week, say a thousand dollars, as a minimum.”

Me: “A thousand dollars is and never has been a small amount of my earnings, even when I was working! I’d have to be running a methamphetamine lab to make enough to afford that each week!”

Employee: “That’s a good idea, sir! Would you consider such a venture?”

Me: “Pardon?”

Employee: “If that would assist you making the payments, [Bank] would be happy to help you. Would you need some bridging finance to start this venture?”

Me: “You do realise what you are asking, don’t you?”

Employee: “Of course. You wish to start a small business venture and we at [bank] would happily—”

Me: “—finance a criminal enterprise?”

Employee: “I beg your pardon?”

Me: “You do understand that making methamphetamine is illegal in this country?”

(There are a few moments of silence, except for rapid typing noises.)

Employee: “Oh, yes. I remember now. I had forgotten because I was thinking about the Rugby football match this weekend between the Blues and the Warriors, sir.”

(Note to American and foreign readers: this is like a person telling you they are in Cleveland to watch an ice hockey match between the Cavaliers and the Browns — two utterly different codes of sport between teams from the same town.)

Me: “I’ll pay you what I can when I can, okay?”

Employee: “That would be acceptable, sir.”


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Cold Hearts Can Leave You In The Cold

, , , , , , | Working | January 22, 2013

(Even though I have graduated college, I still use the campus fitness center almost daily. I’m used to the student employees there being rude and late to open the gym in the morning, and I’ve had problems with campus security being unhelpful in the past. This particular morning, I wake up to a blizzard. As I pull up to the gym, I see four other regulars waiting outside the door: two old ladies and two students, one of whom is in shorts. Keep in mind it’s 6:00 am in January in Minnesota.)

Me: “Hi, guys! I take it no one is here yet?”

Old Lady #1: “Yeah, we’ve all been here since six and there is no sign of anyone yet.”

Me: *to the student in shorts* “Do you want to go sit in my car and turn the heat on? I really don’t mind.”

Student In Shorts: “No, I’m okay. I’m sure they’ll be here soon.”

(Ten minutes later…)

Old Lady #2: “Okay, this is starting to get silly. Maybe I should call campus security and see if someone can let us in.”

Student #2: “I tried five minutes ago. No one answered.”

Me: “I bet you all a million dollars that even if someone from security did come, they’d say it was against policy to let us in.”

Old Lady #1: *laughs* “Even they won’t be that ridiculous!”

Me: *to the student in shorts* “Are you sure you don’t want to sit in my car?”

Student In Shorts: “I’m still fine. It can’t be much longer.”

(After 20 more minutes of making small talk and pacing around, we are starting to get angry and contemplate just leaving.)

Old Lady #1: “Hey, I think there is someone at the front desk! Finally, we can go inside!”

(We all rush to the door, and, sure enough, there is a campus security guard leaning against the front desk. She doesn’t seem to see us, so we start knocking on the door.)

Me: “Hey, can you let us in, please?”

Student In Shorts: “Hello!”

Old Lady #2: “Woman! Open the d*** door!”

(The guard looks in our direction and clearly sees all of us waving, but she doesn’t move and looks away.)

Old Lady #1: “Oh ,you’ve got to be f***ing kidding me. Hey!”

(We continue knocking and yelling until she finally slowly walks over and opens the door.)

Security Guard: “I’m sorry, I can’t let you in until the employee gets here. It’s against procedure.”

Old Lady #2: “You can’t be serious.”

Security Guard: “There’s nothing I can do.”

Me: “Can’t you just let us stand inside? We don’t have to go to the gym. We’ll just sit on those benches until the employee gets here.”

Security Guard: “No.”

Old Lady #1: “We’re not going to do anything. What does it matter if we just sit there?”

Security Guard: “It’s against procedure.”

Old Lady #2: “That girl is in shorts and we’ve all been out here since six! Just let us in the d*** building! You can stand and watch us sit on the bench if you’re worried.”

Security Guard: “No.” *closes the door*

(By this point, we’ve all had enough and decide to just keep pounding on the door and yelling until the guard finally lets us sit inside. She grumbles and complains about this until the student worker finally shows up. By now, it’s 7:00 am.)

Old Lady #1: *to the student worker* “It’s about d*** time, young lady. Why are you so late?”

Student Worker: “I felt like sleeping in. Plus, it looked so cold outside. I didn’t want to leave.”

Student In Shorts: “Wait, don’t you live on campus?”

Student Worker: “Yeah, so?”

Student In Shorts: “Which building are you in?”

Student Worker: *says building name*

Me: “The one across the street from this building?!”

Student Worker: “I didn’t want to deal with the cold!”

(The other regulars and I were left speechless. I still see that student worker some mornings. If it wasn’t for the fact that I can use the gym for free, I’d never go back!)


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This Rep Has A Lot Of ‘Spaining To Do

, , , , , | Working | December 28, 2012

(I notice on my most recent statement that the fee for my student account has suddenly jumped from $3 to $12, so I call the bank’s customer service line.)

Service Rep: “How can I help you today?”

Me: “Hi, I was checking my statement and the fee for my checking account has suddenly quadrupled for no reason. I need that corrected.”

Service Rep: “Oh, I’m sorry; it’s probably just a glitch. What was the amount on your statement?”

Me: “Twelve dollars. It’s normally three.”

Service Rep: “Hm… no, that account’s always been twelve. We don’t have a three-dollar account.”

Me: “I’m sorry, but I’m looking at my statements for the last year and my online account information and it clearly says it’s been three dollars until a month ago. There’s been an error somewhere in your system.”

Service Rep: “No ma’am, you’re the one that’s wrong. Our system never makes mistakes. We’ve never had a three-dollar account.”

Me: “Excuse me, but I’m an unemployed college student living off of grants and loans. I signed up for the discount student account as I could not afford the twelve dollars for the standard account. I was quoted three dollars a month on signup. I’ve been paying three dollars a month up until last month, and I have the paperwork that your company provided to prove that.”

Service Rep: “Well, if you just did ten or more transactions a month, it would be free and you wouldn’t have this problem at all.”

Me: “I have no income aside from my grants and loans for school. Pray tell, what money am I supposed to make these transactions with? That’s beside the point, anyway; the error is in your system and you need to fix it.”

Service Rep: “Our system doesn’t make mistakes! Ugh! You must be reading the paperwork wrong or hallucinating or something. How are you in college if you can’t even understand such a simple concept?!”

Me: “I need you to close my account, right now.”

Service Rep: “Oh, fine! If you’re going to get your panties in a twist, I’ll refund the charge, but you really need to understand that you’re going to be charged and it’s going to be twelve dollars a month. You agreed to do whatever we want when you opened the account.”

Me: “NO. Close my account. Now. I will not be doing business with this company anymore. Close the account, and while you’re at it, give me your name and work extension as well as the name of your supervisor. I’m going to file a complaint.”

Service Rep: “I’ll close the account but I’m not giving you any of that other stuff! Who do you think you are, the Queen of Spain or something? How dare you ask for my personal information?! You’re obviously some kind of scammer. I’ll be reporting you to corporate to make sure you don’t open another account to commit more fraud. Goodbye!” *click*

(I called corporate later with the reference numbers for the transactions and they found the horrible rep that way. I found out she’d been fired immediately after she’d ended the call with me. I still refused to reopen my account.)


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