The Standards Of Falling Are Really Falling

| UK | Criminal & Illegal, Liars & Scammers

(I’ve been put through to a woman who would like to make a complaint about a department store of ours in the north of England.)

Me: “Hello, this is [My Name]. I understand you would like to make a complaint?”

Customer: “I was assaulted in your shop. How much money are you going to give me?”

Me: “My goodness. I’m terribly sorry to hear that. Are you all right?”

Customer: “No. Just tell me how much money you’re going to give me.”

Me: “I’m afraid I don’t deal with compensation; I can only log the complaint and begin the investigation.”

Customer: “You can’t help me! Put me through to someone who can get me my money.”

Me: “I’m as high as you can go in respect of what you want. Once I log the complaint however, and it has been investigated, we will contact you to begin the next step.”

Customer: *sighs* “Okay.”

Me: “Thank you. Could you please tell me which branch of [Store] the incident occurred?”

Customer: “Why do you need to know that?”

Me: “We need to know where it happened so we can investigate. Statements and CCTV footage of the day the incident occurred will be sent and checked.”

Customer: “Oh, umm…” *mumbles*

Me: “Sorry, I didn’t catch that.”

Customer: “…[Branch].”

Me: “Thank you.”

(I take the rest of the details and log the complaint. In general it’s a slipping on a wet floor where no signage was displayed, and, more seriously, the behaviour of the staff which injured her left eye. A week or so later I bump into one of our investigation team.)

Investigator: “Hey, [My Name], did you log the case for [Customer]?”

Me: “At [Branch]?”

Investigator: “We had the footage come in yesterday. You’ve got to see it.”

(He takes me into his office and shows me the footage. It shows a woman, presumably the customer, walking past a wet floor sign. She notices it, looks around, and produces a collapsible walking stick from her bag. She lays down on the wet floor, pushes the sign under a stand with said walking stick, and starts shouting. A worker comes and tries to help her up, and in the process the woman pokes herself in the eye with the handle of her walking stick. She’s eventually taken to the storefront and an ambulance is called, but she flees the store before it even arrives.)

Me: “…”

Investigator: “Ridiculous, don’t you think?”

Me: “She was hesitant in giving me the details.”

Investigator: “Well, here’s why. The store manager said she tried it a few years ago, but the cleaner hadn’t even started mopping yet. She just got back up and started shopping.”

(I haven’t heard much of the case since then, but I imagine a counter-case for fraud is being built against her.)

Echo Tango Phonetic Home

| UK | Funny Names, Language & Words

(I work for an online jewellery company. We offer a customer design service. A customer calls up asking to speak to one of our custom design specialists.)

Me: “Hi, I’m [My Name] from [Jewellery Company]; how can I help you?”

Customer: “Hi, I am interested in your custom design service. Is there anyone I can speak to?”

Me: “Sure, I can give the name and number of one our specialists so they can discuss some ideas with you.”

Customer: “Okay, what’s their name?”

Me: “Pritesh, as in P for Papa, R for Romeo, I for Indigo, T for Tango, E for Echo, S for Sierra and H for Hotel.”

Customer: “Wow that’s a long name!”

(I’m slightly confused by this as Pritesh doesn’t seem that long.)

Me: “What do you mean, sir?”

Customer: “Well, that’s a lot of middle names to have: Pritesh Papa, Romeo, Indigo—”

Me: “No, sir! I was using phonetic to help spell his name. It’s P-R-I-T-E-S-H.”

Customer: “Well, why didn’t you say that!?” *hangs up*

Taxing Faxing, Part 19

| Chattanooga, TN, USA | Extra Stupid, Money, Technology

(I repair office machines. If a customer calls for service and they are not under contract, we charge a $90 fee, hourly and parts fees, and mileage if the distance is over 30 miles from the office. It’s to make them see what a great deal being under contract is. I get a call from a secretary that their fax machine wont print out faxes. We get this a lot so I ask her to make sure the paper roll is not in backwards (the old machines run off of a roll of paper instead of sheets). She assures me it isn’t. I tell her it will be over $200 for the me to even come look at it so I ask her to check again. She is adamant that the paper is in right and is insulted that I would even insinuate that she is too stupid to know whether or not the paper is in backwards. I tell her I would be down in the afternoon. When I get there the secretary shows me the machine. I step up, remove the paper roll, flip it around and put it back in, turn on the machine and it starts printing. The secretary just stands there with her mouth open. I write up the bill.)

Secretary: “Y… you aren’t really going to charge me all this?”

Me: “Yes, ma’am, I told you up front what we would charge and I even tried to help you over the phone.”

Secretary: *starts crying* “My boss will be furious when he finds out. I will lose my job over this!”

Me: “I will lose MY job if I don’t demand payment.”

Related:
Taxing Faxing, Part 18
Taxing Faxing, Part 17
Taxing Faxing, Part 16

Taxing Faxing About Taxing

| NY, USA | Extra Stupid

(Most companies, including the one I work for, are required to obtain W-9 forms from certain vendors they receive goods/services from. The form simply asks for basic info such as the business’ or independent contractor’s name, address, and tax id/social security number. I need the forms to report certain payments to the IRS at the of the tax year. I’m calling a new vendor that’s in the medical insurance field.)

Me: “Hello, I’m with [Company]. Could you please send me a W-9 form?”

Vendor: “A W-9 form?”

Me: “Yes, please.”

Vendor: “Okay, well, where do I send it to?”

Me: “Can you email it to me?”

Vendor: “Um, can I fax it?”

Me: “Sure, please fax it to [number].”

Vendor: “Okay I will.”

(After somewhat of a long while I see a fax come through. Apparently the person I spoke to thought I randomly called her company to get a blank W-9… as if I couldn’t Google it myself if I wanted a blank one. Didn’t know I had to specify that it should be completed with her company’s details…)

Beginning To Understand Why You Have A Criminal Record

| WI, USA | Criminal & Illegal, Time

(This conversation happens on the telephone at my office.)

Me: “Good afternoon, [Name] Law Offices. Can I help you?”

Client: “Hi, I have a case and need an attorney. I’ve been victimized by the courts. I agreed to a misdemeanor charge, but on my records, it’s recorded as a felony! This is outrageous!”

Me: “Okay, ma’am, the attorney is out right now, but I can make you a consultation appointment. Can I have your name and phone number?”

Client: “Oh… I don’t know. I’m very busy. Maybe if I can call you and see if he is in?”

Me: “Ma’am, the attorney tends to be out quite a bit. It would be best if we could make an appointment.”

Client: “But I’m a victim of an injustice! We can’t let anyone get away with it! How do I know the attorney is worth it?”

Me: “Ma’am, the attorney that specializes in criminal defense is very good. We have people calling from all over our state, and from neighboring states as well. Please, can I have a name and a phone number? We can at least call you back!”

Client: “I don’t know… I’m going to be driving, so I won’t be able to answer my phone. I’ll just call later.”

Me: “Ma’am, can I at least have a name so the attorney can know to anticipate your call?”

Client: “Well… I don’t think so; I don’t want him trying to call me when I’m not available!”

Me: *tearing my hair out* “Ma’am, really, any information would be helpful.”

Client: “No… I’ll just call later… You have a good day.” *click*

Me: *to myself* “Well that was just the biggest waste of time EVER.”

(The kicker? I spent half an hour with this woman, which is worth a great deal of money in billable hours, and I ended up horribly behind on my work. And she NEVER called back!)

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