I'm having a deliciously retro customer experience with the Automobile Association of America, who I've been calling to reverse an inexplicable (and, with a 300-mile journey in a 45-year-old truck in the offing, alarming) cancellation of my paid membership.
Already I've been informed that "I'm only telling you what it says here, Mr. Murray."
I've also been told in no uncertain terms that the reason my account has been canceled is that I have moved to Denver. (You can imagine my surprise!)
And then I've been transferred into the upper reaches of the AAA bureaucracy, where a recording told me all agents are busy and to leave a voice mail, so they can call me back within 24 hours. No issue-tracking number, no nothing. The car club of the Fifties, today!
Add to this AAA's antique regional silos, and we have what promises to be a fascinating time-travel adventure into the Customer Service of Yesteryear.
I'll add to this post as developments warrant.
Update: A nice man called from the 21st century called and has apparently fixed the problem right up. Of course, I'm disappointed. But it will be good to have that membership nailed down when I set off next Friday on my Lindbergian journey to Cleveland.
I hear Denver’s lovely, will you be sending a change of address so we know where to send your Christmas card, David?
This is, of course irritating (but also hilarious) and rather timely. I myself had a fun “customer service” experience just Friday, when an order I made at Amazon.ca did not arrive at my office although the postal tracking number insisted that it was delivered to the address on file.
The Post office told me that my only recourse was to file a trace on the package – but wait! Only the SENDER can initiate said trace, the sender in this case being Amazon.
I dutifully send them a message through their website (they don’t HAVE any phone access for customers) and request that they file a trace.
I receive three different, and increasingly confusing emails in reply, culminating with: “Dear Kristen Ridley – based on my understanding of your request, we have cancelled this order, and issued a credit to your credit card. If you wish to obtain the lost items, we encourage you to visit our website and place a new order. We hope this resolves your issue.”
All this by way of saying: “I feel your pain, David!” Looking forward to hearing how your situation plays out.
Eileen B. says
There was a AAA office in Akron Ohio where my big sister worked during high school and college. And if the shenanigans that went on while she was there are any indication (let’s just say she met her husband, who was a co-worker, while working there) then chances are your little bitty problem is nothing to them. I too feel your pain. This is why I don’t use AAA.
Oh no, AAA shenanigans aside, I hope this isn’t the first symptom of your identity being stolen. This sounds eerily similar to a situation I cleared up for my mother-in-law (took 3 painful years!) where id thieves began by changing her address on select bills and subscriptions and ultimately appropriated several credit card offers and checks she had ordered from her bank. If you haven’t pulled your credit report in a while, I suggest you do so as soon as you can.
David Murray says
Nah, Hope, this is a consequence of another complication, I think.
But Eileen, it does sound like I should get a pregnancy test.
auntie susan guthrie says
The new identity he is being offered, of course, is that of a brother who lives in more reasonable proximity to the rest of his siblings. I think this is what is called in new age circles as a “God wink”. Surrender and just call the moving truck.
David Murray says
Sure thing, Susan. When would you three like to be picked up?