Snakes, Scales, & The Devil

Well, they have pizza for lunch, so it must be safe…

Sometimes I get a call from someone, and all I can think is that the person must be a raging psycho. Like the fucking movie Psycho. Really. How thankful I am that people can’t murder me over the phone line. That is what I thought when I encountered a man we’ll call Norman Bates (the main character from Psycho, movie knowledge drop).

Winston: “Thanks for calling Telescreen, this is Winston, how may I help you?”

Customer: “Winston? Yeah, I was trying to get a hold of Jenny. Can you transfer me over to her?”

Winston: “Unfortunately it doesn’t look like she’s in today, but I can give you her direct extension if you’re ready for the number.”

Customer: “No that’s okay, can you just leave a message for her?”

Winston: “Not a problem, I’ll get an email right over to her.”

Customer: “Great. Could you please ask her why she’s so fucking stupid?”

I shit you not, verbatim, this fucking happened. A normal person would have been speechless, but to me, this was just another day. Little did I know what else lay ahead.

Customer: “Then tell her she’s a fuck up and that she should be fired immediately.”

Of course at this point, I was pretty much speechless. If I was a real bad ass I would have been typing away and said, “Is ‘fuck up’ one word or two?”

Winston: “Do you want to tell me what exactly the issue is sir, I’m sure I’d be able to help you.”

Customer: “Where do I even begin?”

Then he gave me some pointless story about how Telescreen was out to get him and he wants to report everyone he talked to previously. I wasn’t really listening to all of that; I was more concerned that he suddenly just lost his shit and was screaming ‘fuck’ every other word. Dude was psycho.

Customer: “And now I have you on the fucking phone, and I can tell you aren’t going to do a damn thing! What is your number? Give me your fucking number!”

As required, I sadly gave him my contact info, and then he started demanding a supervisor (as all raving, lunatic jerk-offs do). Since all of my supervisors are worthless, they didn’t let me transfer the douche, mainly because we didn’t know what the fuck his problem was. He didn’t have an account or provide any info, and the screaming of obscenities really didn’t give us any clues as to what the issue was.

Winston: “I still don’t see an account under your name sir.”

Customer: “That’s the fucking problem, I want new Telescreen service!”

Finally, we had gotten somewhere, so I looked up all of his info in our Super Department database and found he wasn’t approved for a new account. I’d try asking him something and he’d just lose his shit and scream, so I still couldn’t get anywhere. I put him on hold for awhile so I could contact the last agent who had helped him build an account. She told me he had spoken to a ton of people in Super Department, including the manager. The agent offered to forward me an email she sent requesting a manager call-back. Here is the email she forwarded me, modified very slightly for safety sake. Ridiculous as shit, yes, but this is what happens around Telescreen.

Agent: “I have a Norman Bates requesting to file a complain with upper management against [call-center manager] in regards to his call on [date]. Customer stated she refused to help, was extremely rude, and had no knowledge of Telescreen. He also wants to complain about [five other agents, complete with full names and phone numbers]. His main complaint was against [call-center agent] who was cursing at him. He did not know her call-center location, but could tell she was black. He also stated there are too many women in high positions. Customer wants a call back from a MAN who will set him up with new Telescreen service. Customer stated that all women are snakes and have scales over their eyes and are divorced because the devil works through women to get the men in trouble. All of the problems in the world are caused by mindless women, etc.”

Well shit, where do I even begin? Let’s break it down:

1. Who writes a professional email to a manager like that? When psycho’s lose their shit, it’s best to completely ignore everything they’re saying and move on.

2. How did this guy get to talk to the manager? Shit, I can’t even talk to the manager. And how is he going to complain to the manager about the manager? “Hey you, tell yourself to quit being an asshole!”

3. It’s clear the guy is racist and chauvinistic. I’m assuming he’s single and has no friends. Well, I’m hoping he’s single and has no friends for the sake of other people.

4. This is a call center. I mean really. Who fucking cares that much about anything? Nothing he was complaining about was of any importance.

5. All of this fuss is about getting TV service. Fuck TV, read a book.

Winston: “Sorry for the hold sir, but it looks like you just need new service, and I can definitely set that up for you. What package were you interested in?”

I figured I’d skip through the bullshit, make another unfortunate customer, and then get on with my day.

Customer: “Damn you and your service, where the Hell is the manager?”

He then completely lost his shit, and I eventually transferred him over to a supervisor. I’m not sure what happened to him because I really didn’t give a shit. I can only hope he was never christened as a new Telescreen customer, for the sake of, well, everybody.

4 thoughts on “Snakes, Scales, & The Devil

  1. Hey Winston, I work in a similar field and the way you have put up the entire conversation is just too good. For me the biggest task would be to transfer the call to the senior supervisor. The only thing that goes in my mind is: I can handle the customer for sometime, but will my manager take over the case? Bloody shit, this will be the toughest task.

    Nice Post:-)

    • Glad you liked the post and thanks for sharing your thoughts. I totally agree with you, and isn’t ironic that getting help from a superior can sometimes be as difficult as dealing with crazy customers?

  2. That’s because supervisors, no matter the job in question, inevitably follow the “human shield” philosophy when it comes to their subordinates. We take the shit, so they don’t have to. And yet they get paid more. Go figure.

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