An Alarming Lack Of Helpfulness

, , , , , | Working | February 12, 2018

(Our smoke detectors are wired into our home security system, which is wired through our cable phone line. Over a period of a couple of months, our security system keeps randomly going off in the middle of the night a couple of times a week. The security company always calls when this happens to advise they got an alarm and to make sure everything is okay. Our phone line goes dead for a couple of minutes after every false alarm before the call comes in, so we assume — incorrectly, as we found out later — that brief cable outages are causing the system to malfunction. We tell this to the security company representatives whenever they call. This is yet another call at 3:00 am.)

Security Rep: “We’ve received an alarm from your residence.”

Me: *groggy* “Yeah, we keep getting these calls. I think it’s because of the cable going out. Can someone please figure out how to make it stop?”

Security Rep: “Can you please provide the password for the account?”

(A password hasn’t been required for these types of calls in the past.)

Me: “I don’t remember the password. We set it up three years ago and haven’t had to use it.”

Security Rep: “I’m sorry. I can’t discuss anything further with you without the password.”

Me: “I don’t remember it. I can give you the security code for the alarm.”

Security Rep: “Nope, that won’t work. I need the password you set up when you opened the account.”

Me: “No one has asked for it before. Can’t you just ask me some security questions?”

Security Rep: “No, I need the password.”

Me: “But I don’t remember it, and you called me about the alarm. I’ve told your reps before that I think it’s because of a cable outage. Can I speak to someone that can stop these calls? I need to get up for work in a couple of hours, and I can’t have these calls coming in the middle of the night for no reason.”

Security Rep: “I can’t share anything without the password.”

Me: “You called me about an alarm. Can you at least tell me what kind of alarm it is so I can call back later with all the details?”

Security Rep: “I didn’t call about an alarm. I can’t tell you anything, but it wasn’t an alarm.”

Me: *getting frustrated* “Well, alarm, alert, whatever it was, are you telling me I can’t speak to anyone about my account?”

Security Rep: “I can’t tell you anything without a password.”

Me: “I don’t remember the password. Is there someone else I can speak to so we can fix this?”

Security Rep: “No, there’s no one else.”

Me: “So, you’re saying I’ll never be able to speak to anyone about the alarm, or alert, or whatever you want to call it, because I don’t remember a word we set up three years ago?”

Security Rep: “I’m sorry, but I can’t tell you anything except it wasn’t an alarm.”

Me: “So, I can never speak to anyone about my account without this password?”

Security Rep: “That’s right. I can’t do anything without the password.”

Me: “I’m sorry. This just seems insane. You call me in the middle of the night, and you won’t tell me anything, and now you’re saying I can’t fix this because I can’t remember my password?”

Security Rep: “Well, you can come into the office on Monday and someone can reset that for you.”

(She couldn’t have started with that? We did reset the password and figure out what was causing the false alarms.)

In Starch Contrast To Medical Advice

, , , , , , | Right | October 17, 2017

(I work as a receptionist at a hotel. The bar in our lobby serves food as well as drinks. I am working the night shift. It is around 3:00 am when I get this call:)

Me: “Front desk, how may I help you?”

Guest: “Hi, can you connect me through to the bar?”

Me: “Sorry, sir, the bar closes at 11:00 pm.”

Guest: “Well, my daughter is having an allergic reaction, so we’d like some French fries.”

Me: *baffled* “Your daughter is having an allergic reaction… and you want French fries?”

Guest: “Yes.”

Me: “I think you should get her an ambulance.”

Guest: “No, it’s fine. We just need some French fries.”

Me: “I really think you should get her an ambulance. Besides, there is no one at the bar at this hour. How would French fries even help?”

Guest: *somewhat condescendingly* “Well, French fries are made of starch, and starch will help fight the allergy.”

Me: “Well, the deep fryer requires special training to operate. I couldn’t get you fries even if I wanted to. Again, I implore you to call an ambulance.”

Guest: *talking to someone else in the room* “He wants us to call an ambulance.” *click*

(They didn’t call again after that. No ambulance arrived. I hope his daughter was okay. I never heard of starch helping with allergies, and I couldn’t find anything on Google to support this.)