Thursday, August 4, 2016

On Hold

I have been talking to people and on hold this morning for a total of 57 minutes and 32 seconds. My upper back is beginning to ache from cradling the phone between my neck and shoulder.

I have just spelled the word ‘barf’ on WordTower for forty-three points which brings my total to 2537. This is an all-time high, so I suppose I cannot classify this as wasted time. Earlier today I also waited a much shorter time to make sure I was indeed scheduled for some workshops at the Writers’ Center. That was resolved in a matter of minutes.

At issue on this latest call is a recently received bill for $5,670 from my healthcare provider. I suspect this is for three five-minute chemotherapy sessions made as a follow-up to my most recent cancer surgery. This is not right.

This morning has been devoted to spending money on things that are not in the least fun—Verizon, Virginia Power, Kaiser Permanente, etc.  There’s a mysterious charge for a couple of hundred dollars that I identify by going through past payment vouchers—yes, I do owe that sum—but so far the biggie is the $5,670.

I spell the word ‘mucus’ for thirty-eight points.

I have spoken with three different people regarding the provider bill, and each has—very politely, I must say—shuttled me off to someone else.  I am now back to Person Number One, whose name may be Serafina or Jo. I don’t remember.

I spell ‘boob’ for next to nothing in points, but the total score is climbing steadily. Since English is not my native language, I am feeling prouder by the moment at my mastery of complex vocabulary. I am sure I would be prouder still if I weren’t on hold, but then again if I weren’t on hold I would not be playing WordTower and spelling out ‘shit’ which, to my amazement, the game accepts.

I discover that it is neither Jo nor Serafina but Mavis to whom I am now talking, and she says, “Let me look into this.”

“Please,” I say.

I am topped out on WordTower and wonder if there’s anyone out there playing Words With Friends.  My regular WWF partner is at a brand new job, so she can’t play; her employer might frown at such behavior. It appears no one within my tiny Facebook world is available today save a guy I worked with decades ago who now lives in Jamaica. I didn’t like him then and probably wouldn’t care for him now, so I decline his invitation. Plus, he’s a Brit and would probably trounce me.

We are now at 69 minutes and 22 seconds. As I am starting a new WordTower challenge, Mavis returns to the phone to tell me I will have to speak to her supervisor who is at lunch. Can I call back?

I sigh. I say, “Yes, of course,” and spell Jeezus on WordTower, but it is not accepted.


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