October 4, 2015

I Are Agressive

There are two kinds of phone calls that one receives throughout one's busy day: calls from people you like (i.e. family & friends) and calls from people you don't like (everybody else). More often than not, I have a tendency to get the latter, be it on my personal phone or work phone.

Today's post is about a call featuring both phones.

When it comes to answering phone calls from people I don't like, my default phone manner is super aggressiveness, specifically, sugary-sweet to the point of making anyone with earshot desperately chew it back.

This past Thursday (10/1), I received a phone call from Ally, the super smart folks who handle my my perpetually late car payments. Now, I'm very used to getting phone calls and letters from them about my perpetually late car payments, and frankly, it doesn't bother me. I always abuse the grace period given because when you're functioning with one paycheck, you learn quickly to prioritize your bills.

Anyways, back to the phone call.

I have crappy reception where I work, so the 1st phone call lasted about one minute before I hung up (I don't do scripted stupid very well). I went back to my cube, took out the # from my phone, and dialed. A side note: while censorship is a serious concern, self-censorship can be a life saver, especially if you're dealing with a business you don't like on the phone at work.

So after getting the prelims out of the way (name, mail addy, s.s.#), we moved onto the main event. Now, my philosophy in dealing with Ally is to admit and agree to every possible bad thing that they would say is happening.

1} late payments? check;
2} potential hit to credit? check;
3} added finance charges? check;
4} problems with future loans? check;

Somehow, when you admit to, agree to and say that you are comfortable with all of the bad things happening, it throws them for a major loop. They don't know how to respond to that as it's not part of their script. In fact, after I'd stated the following items:

1} one income family;
2} paycheck supports family of five (four actually, but who's counting);
3} bills have to be prioritized (gas and electric first, everything else second)'
4} can't get anyone to refinance;
5} not worried about my car being repoed because I'm making payments every month, untimely as they are.

In fact, the only thing that she could suggest/ask was if I wanted to make a payment over the phone. I told her as a rule, I don't do EFTs.

Believe it or not, this phone call went on like this for about 13 minutes, with me reiterating multiple times those previous nine+ bullet points and her agreeing with me yet reiterating the questions that I had already agreed with. Finally, I attempted to end the call by saying, "Look, I have to get back to work. So, if you don't have anything new to add/suggest in this conversation, I'll have end this call."

Believe it or not, this last part went on for another two minutes, with her agreeing with me, then attempting to reiterated her previous points, and me politely repeating what I'd just said. Finally, I just hung up on her in mid-sentence and ended the call.

Sadly, this is a scenario that is repeated about every three to four months or so, simply because it has to be. I did find out this time around that I have 32 perpetually late payments left to make, so ultimately that was the one piece of new information that was gleaned from this tiresome phone call.

I wouldn't suggest this as a line of defense when talking to a bank, but really, it does throw the CSR for a major swerve when you take away their main line of conversation.

(c) 2015 BOOKS BY G.B. MILLER. All Rights Reserved.


  1. Firstly, I am glad to see (from the comments of a couple of posts ago) that your second eye procedure went well. Hurray!

    As for scripted phone exchanges, it sounds like you have a good strategy going there. Fortunately I'm not in a position where I have to take any such calls seriously. I usually just say "No thank you" and hang up as soon as I realize that the caller is not someone I wish to speak with.

    1. Thanks. A lot less pain the 2nd time around.

      Fortunately, the only pertinent business phone calls I get to my cell phone are from Ally and from Sprint. Sprint I play nice with because I've been with them fro over 13 years and they've always treated me right. Ally, I understand they have a job to do, but I doesn't mean that I have to go along with the program.

  2. You need to record your answers and next time they call, just hit play.

    1. I should, shouldn't I? After all, t always get that, "this may be recorded for training purposes" warning at the beginning of the call. So it would make sense to do that.

      Still, I don't mind it with Ally. I always enjoy the interaction, especially since I always take them out their game.

  3. So much time spent/wasted on phone calls. I know.

    1. A phenomenal amount is wasted. Still, it proves I'm a somebody from time to time.

  4. Geez, sorry. I get calls like that at work at least twice a week - you have to tell someone the same thing 12 times. I feel like asking, "If I tell you again will you stop asking?"

    1. I actually came this close to asking for their supervisor. I figure with a supervisor, I could've cut my phone call time in half.

  5. I guess they are trained to do that, but it's definitely annoying when one is on the receiving end of it. You can ask them to not call you at work and I don't think they can after that.

    1. They don't have my work number, just my cell phone #. I have such crappy reception where I work that it gives me the luxury of hanging up on them with a clear conscience. It can be annoying, but if you can make it work to your advantage, it can ultimately give you cannon fodder for you blog. :D


These days, the written word is to die for, so please leave a comment that shows me and everyone else the real you. All kinds of verbiage will be cheerfully accepted in the spirit it was written.