Monday 27 January 2014

Spitting blood*

I have been dealing with an iniquitous
mail order company,
(the sort that sends out shoddy little catalogues
aimed at the over 60s),
on behalf of a 90 year old friend
who unfortunately relies on these companies 
for the sort of shopping she can no longer do in person.

I had processed the order online but they had invoiced her 
in the parcel with completely different prices.
They have numerous special offers
which fluctuate and expire daily.
Some of these appear in the catalogue,
but not online, and vice versa.
Catalogues hoarded by the elderly
quickly become out of date.
All of this is designed to befuddle even if you are
reasonably compos mentis.
They had caused great anxiety by telling my friend
 that an amount was still outstanding.
I knew this was impossible.

Emails were ignored so I had to ring them.
Their 'customer service' line
with its premium rate phone number
would have cost me over a £1 just to listen to the message
that they were busy helping other customers,
had I not known I could find an alternative number on the
Even once connected, the girl kept disappearing
supposedly to check things, and the line would go dead.
Eventually she conceded that there had been 'a mistake'.

A mistake that had to be rectified at my expense.

Of course I soon found pages of complaints against
these people online, but my friend does not want
to believe that she has been duped.
She values her autonomy so I have to be careful
not to be seeming to undermine her judgement and choices.
I would like her to bin these brochures in future
but I doubt she will.

Happily Tall Cat is in residence today,
as my blood pressure has soared
and he is the remedy.

* A graphic but useful expression that has been in the news recently.


  1. I was reading somewhere about the iniquitously bad online and onphone customer service these days. A bad experience in those places is the equivalent of being shouted at in a shop, and just as unprofessional. And most shops would discipline someone for doing that.

  2. I haven't a clue which side to cheer for and which side to boo , but I love the fact that one of them seems to feel that a "child-first " approach is not right .
    Wouldn't be much point if the children weren't fairly central , surely

  3. I applaud your efforts to sort out this tangle. I hope that I never get caught up in this kind of thing; I think that I won't because I know certain things, but, if my mind were to deteriorate, who can tell what might happen? I do hope, Lucille, that I have a friend such as you if that time comes.

  4. I forgot to say, how lovely that Tall Cat was able to soothe your ruffles.

  5. Tall Cat has done well and earned his keep.

  6. Sorry , I got so distracted by the whole Ofsted name-calling that I forgot to congratulate you on taking on an emmolient and weasly online Customer Service line . Your friend is lucky to have such a firm champion .

  7. Oh that cat is so gorgeous! X

  8. I'd take to Twitter .... it seems to get results. Not that I know how to.