As one of Ned's gifts for Christmas, I got him a Sunday delivery of The New York Times, which in case you think is cheap is not. Like everything in New York, it is expensive and ridic. My father once said that eating in New York is like when you try to eat at the airport. "How is this sandwich $37?"
Nevertheless, it was going to be exciting to spend Sunday mornings reading a really good newspaper, and I am always with Ned on Sundays, so I'd be, you know, taking advantage of it too. And it's not like we'd fight over the sections: I'd look at the style and living sections and the magazine, and Ned would look at the boring parts of the newspaper that have news in them.
The problem is, it's been five weeks since I presented him with this gift (we exchanged presents in January), and the paper has come...
Once! Before I even ordered the paper for Ned, I called the rather unfriendly manager of his building to see where it'd be delivered and would it be stolen, did she think. Oh, absolutely not, she said in as un-warm a voice as one can have and not get bitch-slapped. But after the fourth week of not getting the paper, I called the similarly warm, friendly people at The New York Times customer service number, and said, "Just start sending the goddamn thing to my house so it won't get stolen."
"Apartment number?" they asked me. Jesus Christ.
This is what I abhor about customer service. People who don't listen. Did I not just say send it to my house? My house. Houses don't HAVE apartment numbers, you moronic heifer. Are you playing Angry Birds or something while we're speaking? Jesus.
My point is, no paper today. NO PAPER TODAY AT MY HOUSE, and I do not have to tell you I was in a lather when I called that damn customer service, which should really rename itself the customer indifference department. Jesus.
How many paragraphs can I end with "Jesus"?
"Yes," I said, because I always have to start my phone calls to these people with "yes," like they've proposed or something. "I've ordered The New York Times to come on Sundays, and one time--ONE TIME!--out of the last five weeks I've received the paper. I keep calling and you keep crediting my account, but week after week, no paper. Does the Greensboro delivery person need to be fired? What is going on?"
"Name," said the friendly customer service representative.
"June Gardens, which you should already know because you already asked for my account number before you gave me to a person," I said, getting clammy.
"Account number," droned the extra-helpful customer service representative.
I hate everything.
She was so unhelpful, and so unable to tell me anything, that eventually I just blew up. "YOU GUYS TELL ME THE SAME THINGS EACH WEEK, BUT WHAT YOU DON'T TELL ME IS WHY I'M GETTING ZERO PAPER. WHAT IS HAPPENING? IS IT JUST NOT GETTING DELIVERED? I JUST WANT THE FUCKING PAPER!"
Lather. Did I mention the lather? And do they not TRAIN these people to, you know, calm people down? Because all this person did was make me madder.
"What number can my supervisor call you at," asked old Employee of the Year, there, with the enthusiasm of Hulk headed to a Sex and the City marathon. I gave her my number, glad that at least someone was going to help me. "She'll call in one to two days," said the customer rankle expert.
"ONE TO TWO DAYS? THAT'S IT? THAT'S ALL I GET? NO PAPER TODAY AND A CALL IN TWO DAYS? SERIOUSLY?"
I told her to forget it, that I just wanted my money back, and at this point Edsel was cowering in the spare bedroom. He hates my lathers. The customer surly operator told me that was "extremely unlikely."
"How many months have you been getting the paper?" she asked.
Oh my god. She was not listening to me. SHE.WAS.NOT.LISTENING.TO.ME.
I do not even want to tell you the diatribe I went into at that point, but I DID point out to her that I'd been friendly and patient the OTHER THREE TIMES I'd called about this. I may have even threatened to talk about this on my blog, which I described as being "read by thousands of people."
Note: This blog is not read by thousands of people.
Eventually I said I'd wait for her supervisor to call and I may or may not have hung up on her. Then, shaking, I called back. I got a new customer service rep, which I knew I would.
"Yes," I said (see above). "I was just talking to a VERY unhelpful person, and I'm hoping someone else might be able to help me." I started describing what was going on, and how at this point I just wanted my money back and that I would not be accepting the "extremely unlikely" possibility that I could not get a full refund seeing as I'd gotten the paper ONCE, and as I was telling her I just wanted to forget the NYT ever existed and put this all behind me after telling my millions of readers about it, I walked outside so Edsel would not have to hear me and pee his leg, which he looked dangerously close to doing.
As I paced my driveway, I saw...something blue in the yard. Something that looked, um, suspiciously like a paper wrapped in blue plastic. Tangled up in blue.
"Oh, dear," I said to the poor customer service girl. "Oh, dear. I...yep. I have the paper here. Oh, dear. I am so sorry. I thought it'd be on the porch," I said to her, and went in to give Edsel a Valium. "I'm just glad you got your paper, ma'am, and I can have them deliver it to the porch from now on," said the poor beleaguered thing on the phone.
So. That's, you know, that story. Yeah. Huh.
I gotta go. I have to read the paper.