Yesterday I called my former employer (Gigantic Infrastructure and Waste of Everyone's Time Corporation), and a recorded message said: If you know the name of the person you are trying to reach, please press 596279 NOW. Otherwise, please stay on the line. Fine. I knew the name of the person I was trying to reach, so I dialed 596279.
Another recording now said: If you know the name of the person you are trying to reach, please enter it NOW, beginning with the last name and followed by the first few letters of the person's first name, followed by the pound (#) sign. For names containing a Z, please use the 9 key.
All of our extensions are now preceded by a three-digit code. If the number you previously called was, for example, extension 3549, you must now add 493 before the 3549 extension. You would dial 493-3549 to connect with the person you are trying to reach. Please make a note of the extension prefix for your records, since notice of this addition to our phone system will be removed from this message by June 18, 2011. The number 493 must still used, but callers will no longer notified through this message that it is required.
Wow, this phone call was getting rough! So much pressure! I spelled out the person's last name using the numeric pad, but a recording said: There is no such name in our database. Please try again.
OK, it's possible I misdialed. I entering the name again very slowly and carefully. Again, the recording said: There is no such name in our database. Please try again.
I got through finally and of course the call went directly to voice mail. Since I was already connected to the company, I thought I'd call the personnel department with a question about benefits, but apparently the phone system does not allow someone to reach specific departments, only specific p-e-o-p-l-e. Great. I was told: If you do NOT know the name or extension of the person you are trying to reach, please press 596280 or hold the line for an operator.
Well, there was no point in holding the line for an operator since I know for a fact that this company doesn't HAVE an operator, and haven't had one since the recession started. They only have this stupid non-human-being electronic telephone system. Further, I couldn't even imagine the point of pressing 596280 again. So, I pressed 596280. Again. The recording said: You have reached the end of this message. If you were unable to speak with the party you were trying to reach, please try calling back again later.
And it was at this point the Gigantic Infrastructure and Waste of Everyone's Time Corporation hung up on me. THEY hung up on ME. Oh, the injustice ...