Call Center Purgatory <$BlogRSDURL$>
Call Center Purgatory
Thursday, January 19, 2006
  "But You've Got to Help Me! I'm Pathetic, Don't You See?"

I've decided that there is a large group of people in America that have made it their life's work to become the most incredibly pathetic wusses on the planet.

Let me give you an example...

Because my company provides financial services for some credit card companies and many different kinds of businesses, I frequently take calls from very confused people, who think I can do everything. Some companies provide free road service to their customers, such as a jump start, or changing a tire or unlocking a car.

One of the confused lost souls called me today.

"Anonymous Investments, This is AC, how can I help you?"
"Oh...I needed someone to unlock my car, Is this the right number?"
"Do you have the Platinum Card through Bank of Offshore Investments?"
"Yes, Yes I do."
"Yeah, I'm afraid you dialed the wrong number, here, left me give you their main number..."
"You're going to make me call another number? I'm in a really dangerous part of town. Can't you help me?"
"I'm an investment counselor. I don't know anything about locksmiths."
"I'm going to be late for my appointment, and I'm lost, can't you help me? This is the second call center I have called and I've been on hold for a long time"
"Alright, I'm not supposed to do this. What city are you in?"
"I'm in Detroit."
I typed in "locksmith" and "Detroit,Mi" into Superpages, and found a locksmith.
"Here, write this phone number down and give them a call."
"I don't have pen or paper!"
Was there no end to the whining and crying?
"Oh, I figured out how to put in into my phone."
"Ok, call Tony's locksmith at 317-555-1212."
"That will be free, right?"
"Only if you call the other call center. I am an investment counselor. I can't pay them with mutual funds..."
"But...I have no money...."
"YOU'VE GOT A PLATINUM CREDIT CARD! That's how you called me!"
"'s maxed out!"
"ma'am, I suggest at this point that you call 911. Have a nice day."
What I really wanted to say was, "Are you too dumb to breathe? Is your aunt your mom? What are you doing in a city like Detroit with no money, no keys, no friends, no functioning credit card, and not a functioning brain? Did your Mom put lead paint chips in your oatmeal? What the F--- is your problem!?!"
But once again, terminal niceness and the fine socializing work of my Mother holds true against the prevailing storm of stupid that continues to blow upon my tender psyche. It's people like this that destroy what little kindness I have. You break the rules for them, you go the extra mile, and it's never enough. "I need, I want, I can't, I don't know how, blah, blah, blah..."

We have become a society that can't be responsible for our own lives, unable to help ourselves do anything. Self-sufficiency is as foreign a concept to many North Americans as cultural relativism is to the Taliban. We are a society of consumers. We demand everything be done for us, no matter if we are wrong or not. Grown people attain the ripe age of 30 and can't come to grips with the mental complexities of something being their own fault, and sucking it up and fixing it themselves. I just want to reach through the phone and shake them like a trailer park in a tornado.


I feel better now.

Just have had a week full of whiners, and needed to rant some.

I'm better now.

Thanks for reading,


Anonymous Cog

Oh yeah. I work in a call center for a cell phone carrier and people call in all the time about how they have such a high bill and they plan on cancelling services.

What? You didn't notice you were talking ALL THE DAMNED TIME LAST MONTH?

My call center does RA as one of our products. My personal favorite are the people who run out of gas, and complain about
a: the amount they'll get
b: how long it will take.
c: that they're on the side of a HIGHWAY, and they feel unsafe.

So, let me get this straight, you RAN OUT OF GAS, ON THE HIGHWAY, in a car with a gas gauge that works?

NO sympathy. When I was a phone rep, I'd make SURE these people waited a LONG LONG TIME.

I understand the woman being freaked out, but come on. I'm with you. We see people all the time driving with no money or anything, then expecting help. Help yourselves you morons...
Excellent rant...not a fan of call centres myself but at least it's a human (mostly) on the other end of the line and not some God-damn machine...:)
I think the problem with call centres can sometimes be that the smart people find what they need relatively easily so don't take up much of your day.

It's the morons that you spend most of your day talking to and by the end of the week that can leave you with a pretty dim view of the human race!
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Exploring the mind numbing insanity and childish corporate culture of an unknown call center employee.

Purgatory: A place of suffering and torment with an unknown duration. In Roman Catholic Theology-the place where the dead are purified from their sins.

Email:anonymous.cog at

"One must know oneself, if this does not serve to discover truth, it at least serves as a rule of life, and there is nothing better." -Blaise Pascal

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By Rage Against The Machine

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