June 26th, 2006


Monday Morning Yet Again

Well, here we are again with yet another week. As I'm writing this, every couple of seconds our smoke alarms are going off. they go off for a couple of seconds, stop, and then start up again. It's supposed to be some sort of county-wide test, and we've been told that it'll last about an hour. I don't care so much about myself. I can come in here and shut the door. It blocks out a lot of the high-pitched, irritating noise. Unfortunately, Taz and Cally don't get any relief from the noise. They don't want to come in here right now apparently, but I can only imagine how loud that's got to be for their ears. And, starting at 8:40 in the morning? what about all the old geezers who haven't gotten up yet? Oh, and let's not forget about the people who don't listen to the tenant voicemail who are probably freaking out right now because they think the building is on fire. Okay, so in a way I guess that's almost funny. They have a responsibility to listen to the voicemail, and if they don't it's their loss. I guess that sounds kind of cruel, but if a service is established for the benefit of the tenants, and it's equivalent to what most apartment buildings do by sliding notices under the doors of each unit, they can't say they weren't notified. It's kind of like paying bills. I can't see it, so is that any excuse for not paying it? I could only hope. SMILE!

Okay, so this is going to turn out to be a long day, I can tell now. If I have nothing better to complain about right now than the stupid fire alarm, (oh wow! now they're rotating, and I'm in the perfect position to hear them. Weird!), I can see where my day is going to go. I've got two days at the VA this week, and absolutely no clue who I'll be working with, or which programs or products I'll be training them to use. Oh well, at least it's all in June, and should end up on my July paycheck. And, once Friday at 5:00 PM comes, I've got a long 4-day weekend. Granted, I have absolutely no plans for the holiday, and will probably end up sitting here smelling everyone else's outdoor grills while my tongue hangs down between my feet, but I'll survive. SMILE!

There was an article in the paper this morning talking about our esteemed County Executive. He, in his cushy gas-guzzling vehicle would like to make more cuts to our public transit system. In addition to making these cuts, he plans to try to get higher fares on the buses, and increase the fee for Transit Plus, (our version of paratransit). This guy's main thing the entire time he's been in office is to keep the taxes down and cut other services to compensate. As a tax payer I suppose I should be happy that he's not raising taxes. However, cutting public transportation, and routes that people need is just plain wrong. A couple of the routes he wants to slash are two routes used very frequently by a large number of blind people, and some of the routes that serve the University of Wisconsin--Milwaukee, which all ready has a major parking problem. Unlike him, we can't just get into our nice expensive cars and drive wherever we want to go. What makes this even more sad is that a couple of months back this same man was talking about how he spent a day in a wheelchair to help him understand the needs of people with disabilities. He said that he had gotten a good understanding of some of the issues. My guess though is that he said what the public would want to hear. If he truly had any understanding of how much people need the buses around here he and his staff would find some other way to make their cuts. For example, you should see the salaries of some of these people. (Oh, did I just write that?) I am seriously considering writing him a letter expressing my thoughts. However, I have to make sure I don't do it in such a way that makes me look like an idiot, and yet gets my point across. Also, my guess is that the man will probably never even see the letter since he's probably got people to handle his correspondence for him, but I think it would still be interesting to send the letter and see how many others he gets.

Anyway, in other news, I'm going to try another new recipe tonight. Oops, I suppose I should look at that and get the chicken out, huh? It's a chicken and pasta dish, and it sounded really good. Cream soup, chicken, pasta, and it says to use mixed vegetables; I'm going to use corn since that's what we've got here. Sometime this week I'm also going to be making home-made macaroni and cheese. I've got tons of recipes for that now, but I've got one that just sounded really creamy so we'll see.

The noise has stopped. I guess they can't tell time either since it definitely hasn't been an hour. SMILE! Oh well, believe me, I'm not complaining.

Well, I suppose. I just took my business phone off of do not disturb so I guess my day has officially started. Maybe I'll be back later with more senseless rambling if I feel the need to kill time. SMILE!
  • Current Music
    Continued construction outside my window
Bruce, Caroline

Customer Service?

I got the braille copy of my cell bill from Sprint today and noticed that it had, what I can really only describe as the equivalent of a black line in print running down the right side of each page of the bill. It looks like two columns of A's going down, even on lines or pages that have nothing else on them. It made parts of the bill unreadable since certain numbers were cut off and replaced by these whatever-they-are-things. My balance, fortunately, (or is that unfortunately; oh wait, that comes back to the bill paying thing I was talking about earlier today), was untouched, and therefore I know how much I have to pay and when I have to pay it. So, it's not really a very big deal, accept for the fact that there were some parts that I wanted to read, and since there were some changes to my plan a while back I wanted to make sure I was getting the correct credits and things. So, I decided to call Sprint and let them know of my problem. Now, I have to say here that I really do like Sprint. I've been with 3, (well 4 if you count the changeover from Suncom to AT&T as two separate companies), since 1999, and I can honestly say that I've had better service with Sprint than with any other company. In August I will have been with them for three years, which is longer than I was ever with any of the other companies. Having said this though, I also have to say that there are times when I wish they hadn't merged with NexTel because they inherrited a lot of out-sourced workers, and I seem to have a problem with the language barrier. So, 9 times out of 10, I end up completely frustrated by the end of my conversations. The call went something like this after getting through the voice-activated system:

Rep: Thank you for calling Sprint PCS together with NexTel, my name is Jackie, how may I help you today?

Me: Hi, I get the braille bill andI just received my current bill today, but there seems to be a problem with the copy.

Rep: Okay, I can help you with that. Let me make sure I understand what your problem is. You have a question about your bill?

Me: (A little hesitantly), Yes.

Rep: Okay, do you have your bill in front of you?

Me: Yes, but ...

Rep: Okay, let me look up your account so I can assist you with your billing problem.

Me: I don't have a problem with the balance, I have a problem reading my braille bill.

Rep: Okay. Let me see if I'm understanding you. You don't have a problem with your balance but you have a problem with your bill.

Me: Yes, I'd like to request a new copy.

Rep: You'd like a new copy. Let me bring up your account information so I can take care of that. What's your account number, starting with the area code?

Me: 414-555-5555. (Don't try calling that, I don't know what you'll get. SMILE!)

Rep: Okay, thank you. For security purposes, may I have your name and password on this account?

Me: My name is Caroline Congdon, my password is ABAPITA. (And no, that's not my password, but if anyone doesn't know what that's an acronym for let me know and I'll fil you in. It just seemed really useful right now.)

Rep: Okay, thank you.

I heard her typing and typing, and I heard other people in the background on other calls. She was silent for about two minutes and then finally:

Rep: Okay, I have requested that you get your bill in braille. Is there anything else I can do for you today?

Me: I'm all ready getting my bills in braille, I'd just like a replacement copy for this one.

Rep: Right. You'll get a new copy of your bill.

Me: The braille copy, not the print?

Rep: Yes ma'am.

Me: Okay, just making sure.

Rep: Is there anything else I can do for you today?

Me: No thanks, I think that'll do it.

Rep: Okay, let me recap our conversation. You wanted to get a copy of your phone bill. Has your problem been resolved to your satisfaction?

Me: I just want to clarify again, this is the braille copy, not the print, right?

Rep: Yes. The bill is in braille. Is there anything else I can do for you today?

Me: No, I think this will do it.

Rep: Okay, let me recap our conversation. You want a replacement bill sent to you. Was your problem resolved to your satisfaction?

Me: (after a couple of seconds to bite my tongue), Yes ...

Rep: I'm very happy to hear that Ma'am. Thank you. We at Sprint are striving to provide you with the best possible customer service experience. Thank you for calling Sprint. Again, my name is Jackie, and you have a nice evening.

Me: Thanks, you too.

So, that's that. I honestly can't do this justice in writing because you just had to be there to fully understand the whole interaction. It just seemed to me like the braille part wasn't quite understood since she would never acknowledge it. And yes, she honestly backed up and asked me questions twice, that wasn't double typing. I think she had a script, and I interrupted it, so she had to back up a little bit to get the whole thing in. I said that I was satisfied with the call, but I honestly won't be satisfied until I see what kind of bill I get. I also just find it weird how she had to keep repeating back to me everything I said. I've seen this with other reps as well, so not sure if it's a new practice, or just something that certain people do. I just thought it was kind of interesting, and we'll see what kind of bill I get. I wouldn't even be concerned at all since I've got several other ways of getting the information, but I like seeing a hard copy of my bill so that I can check it for accuracy and things just like anyone else would. And, it's nice to have for archiving.

Anyway though, that's my story for the day. We'll see how it goes.
  • Current Mood
    amused amused