Thursday, June 26

Please Hold...

Funny thought:
The phone systems we have at TTC and NSB are the same and allow for a queuing system that not only plays music but can say the occasional message. (You are number XX in line, please hold, Your call is important to us, etc, etc)

Wouldn't it be funny if there was a bit of "Truth in Holding" among big companies? I think it would look something like this:

Me: "I'm going to call ___________ (insert big company) and see if they can't take care of the issue I have been having with ______________ (insert piece of technology)!"
Phone System (PS): "You have called the (big company) technical support line. Our menu options change constantly so you have to listen to the whole message. Are you sure you wanted to call us? Press 1 to be disconnected, press 2 to be connected up with the sales department, press 3 to listen to this message again, press 4 to be connected with someone in India you can't understand, press 5 for me to ignore the key press and repeat this message again, or press 6 to enter the call queue where your odds of speaking to a real human being are 50%... the other 50% is possible disconnection. To be disconnected now press 1..."
Me: *6*
PS: "We appreciate you listening to this whole message as we have chosen to hire a voice actor and give him lunch in exchange for using his voice across our phone system. You have obviously made it this far so you must have a semi-legitimate question." rings once "I'm sorry all of our phone operators are either busy playing Halo or pretending to be busy but are really just talking into their headsets. If you'd like to be disconnected press 1 now... otherwise stay on the line and you will be connected up to our over-seas connection. Press 2 to remain the queue and possibly talk to someone who can help you."
Me: quickly pressing 2
PS: "Ahh, I see there is no shaking you. I suppose we have 'separated the wheat from the chaff' as it were. You are position 231, the current wait time is the same amount of time it takes for a human to swim across the Atlantic Ocean. If this doesn't deter you then please listen to our hold music. 45 minutes of this should soften you up a bit." Infinite looping semi-techo-pop music with occasional country vocals echo from the phone headset.
Me: "Bring it on phone system."

36.5 minutes later...

PS: "Hello..."
Me: "What? Oh Hello! I have a problem with..."
PS: "... and thank you for holding. I'm back to pretty much make sure you're still tethered to your phone. We hope you've been enjoying our brainwash... errr... hold music. You can still quit! Press 1 to stay queued up, press 2 to be connected to an overseas office, or stay on the line to be dropped from our system."
Me: press 1
PS: "Yeah... that's what I thought. Please continue to hold."

42.46 minutes of techno-country-pop later...

PS: "Are you still there? Your call has started to be a minor annoyance and burden to our phone system. I am pleased to inform you however that you are now number 230 in our queue... in other words time wise consider yourself just off the coast of Rhode Island. Keep swimming. Please Hold."

2 more hours of phone system mockery...

PS: "Well, I've had my fun. How can I help you?"
Me: "What? You mean it's been a person the whole time?"
PS: "Yep. In fact I'm the only one on the phone here and you've been listening to my synthesizer playing. Would you care to buy the CD?"
Me: "Ahh, no. I had a question about my (broken piece of technology)."
PS: "Oh, well I hate to tell you this, but that version is no longer supported. It was obsolete about 2 hours ago. Let me connect you up with sales... please hold."



  1. And you claim not to be an artist! Great piece of creative writing!!! (I was laughing outloud)

  2. Anonymous4:57 PM

    No.... I think I claimed that I was a writer.


  3. It's still a form of art. A word sculpter, if you will.

  4. Anonymous9:27 AM

    Aha, that's great!

  5. AH! It's so true! I was on hold for Frontier Airline for 27 minutes for them just to tell me they changed the times of my flight a few minutes (something they could have emailed a simple "go to this link for updated itinerary" email...). I just put my phone on speaker and went back to whatever I was doing on my computer. If you can't beat 'em, join 'em, right?

    Oh, and in my experience, the brainwash, er, music is usually Kenny G or other 'easy listening'. Whoever named it 'easy listening' obviously never listened to it.


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