This post is without merit. Without tech support (although it does kinda hinge on the very same thing), and without apology. Over the years I’ve had more than my fair share of jobs. A majority of them were horrific, the remainder we’re bearable at best. This (like my waffling pyro post) is more of a reminisce of years gone by and 110% liberation.
I don’t know how many of you have ever had he joy of experiencing a high volume, tech support call centre and frankly if you’ve never been there I envy you. This nameless corporation we’re based in Newport, Gwent (Wales) and handled the dial up enquiries and (if I was lucky) ISDN dual bonding support requests for a wide selection of ISP’s. This is way before ADSL, way before cable, and the quickest connection aside from leased lines was the afore mentioned dual bonded ISDN (128k of power!).
The operating system in vogue at the time was the rock solid Windows 98 SE2 and a majority of users were running on US Robotics Sportster 28800 modems.
Now the job appealed to my tech knowledge at the time, the daily and hourly challenge to get someone back up and running within the allotted time slot of seven minutes a challenge mostly dependent of what other techs had handles the call prior to me getting it (if ever the phrase you pay peanuts, you get monkeys was true; This was it) and generally expanding upon my knowledge of the Windows 98 registry and various hacks to get the best out of dial up.
There was an unofficially known burn out period for these poor saps who manned the phones in these sweat shops of nine months and generally at the end of this period you were reduced to a gibbering pile of boneless support and scooped up and left outside the front door with nothing more than a deep seated hatred for all that used the internet, especially those who were over the age of 60 and a long term scowling attitude towards socialising.
Me? I remain a faithful (yet medicated) employee right up to my fourteenth month.
A not so normal day on the evening to night shift ensued. Six PM and a majority of the UK’s population were dialing into lines all around the country and things were breaking. The board of bright red text was usually a more serene and welcoming green, and hundreds if not thousands of UK subscribers across all the supported ISP’s were clamouring to get hold of a technical support agent or their blood.
Eventually I wrap up the last completed call and take a five second breather before the next gem comes in. Now from the outset there was a general script and welcome paragraph to get out the way prior to getting onto the main issues. From the outset this caller was going to be special.
Aside from the issues we had with service breaking, this poor helpless (and possibly moronic) sap had attempted to install our CD and in doing so had wrecked something. I couldn’t exactly make out what was wrecked due to his continual and literal screaming down the phone at me .
“Since installing your fucking software my wife has run off with the dog, and the fucking toaster has broken the fridge, and …”
What ever had gone wrong in this wonderful persons life today had got better and I was on the end of it. Throughout this tirade of abuse I remained calm, resolute and repeatedly enquired if “Sir ….”, “hello sir”, “hi there …”.
This literally continued for five full minutes of ranting, and eventually I snapped.
Shouting back down at the “customer” I exclaimed;
“SIR! IF YOU’D BE SO KIND AS TO REMOVE YOUR FUCKING HEAD FROM YOUR FUCKING ARSE AND LISTEN TO WHAT I AM FUCKING TRYING TO TELL YOU, YOU WILL UNDOUBTEDLY FIND YOUR FUCKING PROBLEMS GET SOLVED A DAMN SIGHT FUCKING QUICKER!”.
Silence falls on the receiver. The call centre is silent (odd considering how busy the board is), and faces are peering around every single cubical divider.
In a rather measured, yet narked tone of voice this lovely gentlemen starts to say “I want to talk to your fuc….”. I’ve heard enough. I rip the headset out of the phone base. Kick the keyboard to the monitor, scoop up my coat and bags and start the walk past the management table and to the exit.
Without breaking stride, I walk up to the management table and past it exclaiming that “And you lot! You can shove this fucking job right up your arse too!”. Didn’t break stride. Flung the headset at the shocked management team and left the company.
I wholeheartedly can recommend the great feeling of exiting a position in such a manner. In one final twist of fate, I actually received a glowing reference from them as well as I moved on to another call center during the dawning golden age of cable internet.