January 17th, 2002


I should be nicer to them. I *was* a telemarketer once after all...

I got home last night and had just enough time to take off my coat and sit down when the phone rang. I answered, said hello, heard the telltale pause of a computer-dialed telemarketing call and then a canned voice said, “This is an important call. Please hold for the next available operator.”

Intrigued and somewhat flabbergasted, I wondered what phone call was so important that I have to wait to talk to someone who called me when I really didn’t want them to call in the first place. So I waited. I heard the announcement about three more times before I heard another pause and a confused “Hello?”

“Who is this?” I demanded.

”Erum…this is Dietra, calling from Comcast Cable.”

“Tell me, Dietree, because I have to know, what could possibly be such an important call that I have to wait to talk to you when you are the one who called me?”

“I didn’t call you, ma’am.”

“I’m not talking about you specifically, Dietree. I’m talking about Comcast Cable. What does Comcast Cable have to offer me that they call me before they have an operator ready to field the call?”

“Well, um, we’re sending a free month of TVGuide to our Comcast Preferred Cable Subscribers [which, by the way, is the only service you can get that doesn’t involve the extra HBO charge. It’s basic cable with a fancy name] and if you enjoy your subscription for that month we will continue to send it to you for just $2.65 a month.”

“That’s it? You’re not going to offer me a free gift or anything?”

“We are offering you a free gift, ma’am, we’re offering you a free month of TVGuide.”

“I’m not talking about that. I mean like a gift. You know, like a phone in the shape of a football or something.”

“This is a cable company, ma’am.”

“So that’s it. That’s what you called and had me wait to talk to you for? Do you—and I don’t mean you, Dietree, I mean Comcast Cable, the “royal you”, if you will—do you actually think that that was worth calling me and asking me to hold for you?”

“You waited, didn’t you?” –Nice. She almost got me there.

“I waited because I had to find out. Consider it science. Let me ask you something Dietree,”

“It’s Die-TRA”

“It doesn’t matter. Are you recording this call for my safety and security?”

“Um, yes, we are recording this call.”

“I thought you had to tell me that right out…whatever. Play this call back for your supervisor and suggest to him that if you don’t have enough operators to handle all of your outgoing calls at once, maybe it’s time to slow the dialer down. Think about it. Okay?”


“Good night.”

Something tells me that Dietra is going to sign me up for the TVGuide anyway. I always get bitten in the end when I try to be a smartass.
  • Current Mood
    bitchy bitchy
  • Tags