Live People

a crazy man on the phone
Monday, November 09, 2015
Today I am grateful for live people. Primarily on the phone. Even better if they have a brain. It’s a real plus if English is at least ONE of their languages. It helps even more if they spit the marbles out of their mouth before speaking. Actually listening helps. Saying, “I will help you” when they aren’t doesn’t.

We don’t want the tops of our heads to blow off when we find it necessary to call an insurance company about something. But they are like the old poem about little girls. . .”when they are good, they are very, very good. . .but when they are bad, they are horrid!” They’ve been horrid. Big time.

We spent an hour (this time) on the phone with Optum RX regarding a prescription John needed before our trip. They had already messed it up once, which now makes it urgent. For us. Not them. Mr. I Will Help You kept putting us on hold. If it wasn’t his first day speaking English I’d be surprised. The din wherever he was, probably Mumbai, was deafening. I couldn’t hear him. He couldn’t hear me. It sounded like he was inside an aquarium with an immersion blender stirring things up. . . or slinging chicken tiki at a greasy spoon. I could almost smell the curry.

I don’t care about any of that. I celebrate diversity. People need jobs. I get that. Unless he’s not doing his job. And he wasn’t. I guess he called a supervisor over because I could hear someone feeding him lines, like a prompter in an elementary school play. Finally we got it straightened out. Yes, they will ship it via Federal Express. Yes, we will get it by Tuesday. . .latest. Yes, yes, yes, got us off the phone, but guess what? No, it’s not coming. No, no, no.

When I came home from the Y I had to pick John’s brain up from the front lawn, where it landed when his head exploded. I wanted to get the whole story. He had a bad feeling, so he called to double check on that order. “Oh no! Mr. Mooney. I’m so sorry, the man you spoke with ticked the wrong spot and you will not get it until November 19th!” Maddening. I’m sure that’s why stupid Optum RX notices that everyone is on blood pressure meds. Because of them!

The good news is that some saint at Walgreens actually spoke to John on the phone and explained how to make this all happen. Wow! A live person. . .right down the street. . .with a pulse, a brain, good diction, patience, and a grasp of the English language. Life is good here. I don’t know about Mumbai.

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