My Worst Call of the Day

From the dozens of idiotic calls I take each day as a customer service representative, I humbly submit the winner.

Wednesday, May 04, 2005

The Haunted Trailer

Just when I think my calls can’t get any crazier, I get one that’s so damn whacked-out it just leaves me speechless. Such is the case with today’s worst call. In fact, this one is so bizarre that I wouldn’t blame you if you didn’t believe me. Truth is stranger than fiction, though—you just can’t make this shit up.

The caller began by informing me that the electric company had disconnected service to her trailer several months ago, because she didn’t pay her bill. Okay, there’s nothing surprising here so far, especially given that she lives in a trailer. She added, however, that her service kept being mysteriously restored, forcing the company to come out and shut it off again.

This had happened so often, she told me, that the company was investigating her for theft, and would be pressing charges against her. The caller vigorously protested her innocence, denying that she was the one who reconnected the service. “But I know who done it, ” she said ominously, as if she were sworn to secrecy but couldn’t resist telling. “It was my family. They knew I was in trouble, and just wanted to help me out.”

I advised the caller that this wasn’t really the best way her family could assist her, as she might be prosecuted for their actions. “Have you told them to stop doing this?” I asked.

“I wish I could,” she sighed, “but they’re all dead. I’ve lost fourteen family members in the last two years.” She said this matter-of-factly, almost proudly, like the stalwart heroine of a Tammy Wynette song who’s survived one tragedy after another.

I just kind of sat there for a moment, trying to formulate a response. The best I could come up with was, “Uhhhh . . . I’m sorry? . . . did you say that your deceased relatives were the ones doing this?”

“I know it sounds crazy,” she replied earnestly, “but there’s been some pretty spooky shit happening in my trailer. I have a lot of candles, and they’ll just light themselves out of nowhere. When I try to blow them out, they fly across the room. So now I just let ‘em burn!”

Trying hard not to laugh at the thought of a candle-throwing, trailer-dwelling poltergeist, I informed the caller that my agency could not, unfortunately, assist her. We cannot intercede, I explained, in cases where fraud or theft is suspected. The caller did not take this well. “What the hell am I supposed to do NOW?” she moaned. “Is there anyone ELSE I can call?”

And it took every ounce of willpower I had not to reply, “Hmm, I dunno . . . Ghostbusters?”

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8 Comments:

  • At 5/05/2005 3:50 PM, Anonymous Simon Gray said…

    OK, I've gone from pitying you to sorta envying you -- I can't believe you actually get paid to be this entertained all day. Trade jobs for a day? I'll take really good notes, I promise.

     
  • At 5/05/2005 6:35 PM, Anonymous Katie said…

    I just had to stop by and say that your blog amuses me to no end. Keep on blogging =D

     
  • At 5/05/2005 7:44 PM, Blogger Anonymous Me said…

    So, Mr. Gray, I see you're too sick to go to work, but not too sick to post comments on people's blogs! I'll trade you any day, believe me--I'd be more than happy to design cool stuff. I have very definite design sensibilties, which are:

    1) no negative space
    2) puppies and kittens are cute!
    3) the '80s grid NEVER goes out of style
    4) the 'wingdings' font can never be overused
    5) if I put more than five minutes into a piece, I've overthought it.

    Can we still trade?

     
  • At 5/05/2005 10:35 PM, Anonymous Simon Gray said…

    For god's sake, man -- have I tought you nothing?

    1) It's WHITE space, not NEGATIVE space. Your glass-is-half-empty attitude would never fly in the design world, Mr. Pessimism.
    2) But baby seals are cuter. NO ONE can resist a baby seal.
    3) Having seen your Duran Duran album collection, I can see why you'd say that.
    4) Two words: Comics Sans. 'Nuf said.
    5) Wait, I thought that was your dating mantra?

    And let me remind you, you already said I could design the Worst Call of the Day book cover when it gets published -- unless you want me to incorporate all 5 of your design axioms, you'd better come mow my yard. And no, that's NOT a euphemism -- the grass needs cut, and I'm sick. Chop-fucking-chop.

     
  • At 5/08/2005 11:03 PM, Blogger Stacey said…

    Too funny, but I must say that the future of the human race frightens me!

     
  • At 5/08/2005 11:37 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    no surprise since she lives in a trailer? sorry, but in a lot of places a fucking trailer is the only place one can live. this doesn't mean the people living there are poor, deadbeat, redneck trailer trash.

     
  • At 5/09/2005 12:44 PM, Blogger Bloghead said…

    The hair behind my necks was beginning to stand. I was sweating it out. Suddenly, I laugh. You got me there. Something, to laugh my way to sleep, way past midnight.

     
  • At 5/10/2005 1:30 AM, Blogger Jon Castle said…

    Here’s an idea—not spam! I leave a comment like this one in your comments section with a link to my website then you go to my site and do the same. Just another way to get more back links to your site and boost your search engine ranking. Good idea?

    We are each a single drop of rain strafed by the wind to merge with other droplets and thereby form an ocean. For unconventional home business wisdom, Home Business Opportunities and more please visit Jon Castle’s website American House Dad

     

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