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Home  l  Humor

Nightmare on AOLm Street

Submitted by Rusbiz Librarian  l July 28 2006  l  Viewings: 4819

 
By Judy Gruen

The following is based on a true phone call between Don, a mostly law-abiding guy, and Hank, a customer service representative at a humongous high-speed internet service.

Hank: This is Hank at Humongous High-Speed Internet Service. How may I help you?

Don: Hi, your company keeps charging my credit card $29.95 every month even though I cancelled my account three years ago. Can you cancel my account for good? Hello? Are you still there?

Hank: Im here, I was just trying to understand why any right-thinking individual would want to cancel their service with Humongous High-Speed Internet Service. Can you explain yourself?

Don: I dont need it anymore. I havent needed it for three years.

Hank: What, do you have high speed or DSL or something?

Don: Yes, Ive got DSL, as a matter of fact.

Hank: Do you use your DSL for business, pleasure, or internet gambling?

Don: Thats none of your business. Just cancel the account. I dont need it anymore.

Hank: Ill be the judge of that, Don. Pulling up your account here Im showing you have a LOT of usage with us. Im showing more than 792 hours in the last month alone.

Don: Thats probably just IM usage. We dont even have your software installed anymore.

Hank: As I said, Don, Im showing a lot of usage on this account. Clearly you are not in a position to cancel it. Sorry. No can do.

Don: Look, I said that was IM usage. Im the account holder. Your company has been robbing me of $29.95 every month for three years, and every time I call to cancel they tell me theyll cancel it, but then the next month I still see the charge on my bill. All I want is to get this blasted thing cancelled. What dont you understand about this, Hank?

Hank: Is there a problem with the software itself?

Don: Youre not listening. CANCEL MY ACCOUNT.

Hank: On June 2 you were signed on for 72 hours, Don. In May you had 681 hours of usage.

Don: Listen, you SOB, just cancel the account!

Hank: Whoa there, Don, verbal assault of an employee at Humongous High-Speed Internet Service triggers an automatic surcharge of an additional $9.95 a month, as per our terms of use clause. Just hang on here while I update your account to reflect the new charges. Are you still using the same credit card ending in the numbers 9721?

Don: (incredulous) You cant do that!

Hank: Ive done it already. Thats why efficiency is my middle name. If you carefully check your conditions of use on this account, Don, youd see that we may, in our sole discretion and at any time, modify or discontinue the terms of our service, or any portion thereof, add extra fees and made-up charges without prior notification to you, especially if we had bitter coffee that morning.

Don: You are a sick individual. Sick and demented!

Hank: I wish you hadnt said that, Don, because that is more verbal abuse. Now youve left me no choice but to send a lethal virus into your computer and disable the powerful pop-up blocker and virus protection that Humongous High-Speed Internet Service created and which is the envy of our competitors. Maybe now youll understand that Im only trying to help you.

Don: Helping me doesnt mean finding ways to keep an account Ive been trying to cancel for three years, adding bogus surcharges to it, and infecting my computer with viruses. It means CANCELLING THE FRIGGIN ACCOUNT!

Hank: Don, is your father at home?

Don: My father lives in a retirement home in Coral Gables! Im the father in this house! You know, youre annoying the *&^%$ out of me.

Hank: Yeah, same here, pal. Have you ever considered anger management therapy?

Don: I dont need anger management, Hank. I need a gun and to instant message it to your kneecaps. You are coating my intestines with stress acid. The enamel is falling off my teeth. Ill say this one last time before I call an attorney: CANCEL. MY. ACCOUNT.

Hank: You will live to regret this, Don. Dont be surprised when 400 e-mails offering investment opportunities in Nigeria come flooding in your virus-plagued computer. Before I can go any further with your so-called cancellation, I need to torture you by reading several paragraphs of small print about our free membership benefits, including our definitions of such terms as account, supplier, content, and third-party telecommunications provider in our service agreement.

Don: (screaming) Dont read me anything! I cant take it anymore!

Hank: You must be at least 13 years of age or older to use our member services and to create screen names and passwords. . . " Whats that banging I hear in the background, Don?

Don: Im hurling blunt instruments against the wall and getting ready to slit my wrists with my letter opener. Here I go . . . (screams again)

Hank: We are deeply committed to your security and . . . Don, you with me buddy? Don? DON?

Judy Gruen is the author of two award-winning humor books including "Till We Eat Again: Confessions of a Diet Dropout," and the popular "Off My Noodle" column on http://www.judygruen.com. Write to her at judy@judygruen.com.











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