The other day I called Information (411) in an attempt to get the number to a local sub shop. After stating my city and state, I proceeded to tell them the name of the shop. The recording on the other end (some sort of robot sent from the future with plans of ruining my day) could not get my request right. After giving me the names of other restaurants in different towns, she kept repeating, “Is this correct?” After being polite to the monotone recording for several minutes I started requesting personal assistance. “We will connect you with an operator,” she replied, only to have the process start all over again with the question “city and state please.” I was connected twice to two different laundromats when it was quite clear I needed somewhere to eat. Finally, after a process of over ten minutes, a human being pushed the cyborg out of the way and got on the phone. I got my number in less than 30 seconds and also a courteous “have a nice day.”
Gone are the days where people can help people. Personal interaction should not be a lost art. Just because we have computers and recordings for everything from banking to home security does not mean we should forfeit all things human.
I just don’t understand that whole situation. It seems nowadays common sense is forgotten. This got me thinking, what else in this wacky world does not make sense to me? Now I consider myself pretty knowledgeable and even somewhat smart, but the following things I will just never understand.
l During a football game, the announcer always comments on how tired the defense must be after a long offensive drive; as if to say that the offense isn’t doing the same amount of running. How come they aren’t tired?
l How is it that the same Huffy mountain bike my parents bought me when I was ten for $65 is going for $850 on The Price is Right?
l Rita Cosby is on TV with permanent laryngitis and MSNBC even gave her a show.
l Sixteen-year-old girls flipping me off behind the wheel of their car.
l People at Circuit City trying to sell me store insurance on a DVD player when the product already offers almost full coverage stating, “they don’t cover everything.” No thanks. I’ll take my chances that a lion won’t break down my front door and eat my entertainment player; and if that does happen, I’ll gladly pay another $300.
l The Fish Filet at McDonald’s.
l Spelling bees on ESPN.
l Uncle Jesse and Aunt Becky trying to raise a family in that cramped attic on “Full House.” Can’t a successful talk show host and a musician/advertising agent/radio man afford at least a two bedroom somewhere without creepy Danny and his dust buster?
l When ordering at a drive through, they ask you after everything you say “will that be all today”? Wouldn’t it be in my best interest to tell you when I am done, so that you can process my order and deliver that food?
l Those damn IBM commercials.
l The female sex.
That feels good to get off my chest. But unfortunately this is just the tip of the iceberg with the things I just do not understand. We live in a vast and uncontrollable world sometimes, but it makes me feel better to realize we are all in this together. So watch out for your fellow human being. Do not let them stay on the line with 411 for more than two minutes. Tell them to ask how much extra insurance for their iPod costs, then smile and say “No thanks.” Because without this common bonding and brotherhood, it will be no time before a sophomore girl in high school cuts me off in her car and throws up her middle finger while I contemplate how that 12-year-old kid spelled ‘ferocious’ on ESPN last night. Let’s hope that day never comes. The funny thing is, I think it already has.