It’s Friday. It’s raining. It’s dreary at threadingwater base camp and I’m in a snitty mood. Today’s number one snit-o-commentary concerns a most annoying trend that has recently been noted by GHIW and myself. Businesses – especially doctor’s offices – that seem to have a policy of refusing to take messages.
“Hello. I need to speak with Dr. So-and-So’s nurse.”
“Sorry. She is only in the office between 8 a.m. and 3 p.m. I suggest you call back tomorrow between those hours.”
“Could you take my name and number and ask her to call me?”
“It would be better if you just called back tomorrow between 8 and 3.”
Umm . . . excuse me, better for whom?
Maybe my upbringing as the daughter of a self-employed businessman who often received calls at home from his clients, is to blame for my peevishness. Or maybe it’s all the years I worked as an office secretary taking messages as part of my job. Whatever the reason, I find these attempts to shift responsibility back to me for follow-up to be grievously annoying.
Voice mail and other forms of automated answering devices are bad enough. When I finally reach a human being, I shouldn’t be forced into a verbal arm-wrestling contest in order to get them to take my name and number and relay a simple message.
So there. Thinking giant thoughts today.