I use the check-out method I want to still be available to me ten years from now…and I’m pretty sure the computer driven ones don’t need my support. (And the computer doesn’t notice that you grabbed a bad melon, and wouldn’t tell you if it did.)
Question: Why does every grocery store, utlity, bank, etc… think that I want to help them lower their overhead, become more efficient, and reduce their labor costs? When I called up about my electric bill, Ms Consumers Energy Corp answered and let me know that they’d get around to reading my meter when they got to it, the law only requires it to be read once per year, and she didn’t seem to have a grasp on why I didn’t want to pay an estimated bill for another six months, right after I’d umplugged the hot tub. And these bozos, with whom I ended up having a $600 credit, want me to go paperless on my billing…to save them dimes I’ll never see. How 'bout a six pack of Bite Me! to that idea? None of these Wharton MBA’s have ever offered to save me a dime. Screw 'em. I go through the manned check out lane every time I get the chance.
My bank is offering me a discount on the monthly fee it is going to charge me for keeping my money there, if I sign up for direct deposit of my paycheck. Screw 'em. I’ve been with them since 1972 and it’s over, now, and forever. They close my local branch in order to open one between my town and the one five miles west of me. No big deal, except the new one is further away, the ATM machine doesn’t need envelopes to deposit a check…but no one has actually seen the thing do anything of the sort successfully, and they let go the staff, most of whom had been there for thirty years…and were the only reason I still went there in the first place. I can get a computer to screw things up all on my own unassisted. When I need help from a banker it’s not about redeeeming my S&H Greenstamps, and I’d like it to be someone I know and trust, and whom has at least the slightest idea as to what the heck is going on. Somone who can figure out how their employer is trying to screw me yet again. They’ve got all kinds of ideas on how I can “save” money, none of which ever save me money, while I’m pretty sure they result in bank employee layoffs…of the only people who can explain a $7.65 charge out of nowhere. These are the same computer people who cannot send me a credit card statment by mail or electronically, but profess amazement when they call me up, because I’d never been late on the bill before. I’m past explaining, yet again, that I send a payment, as needed, twice a month instead of once a month because I don’t know when it’s due and nobody can tell me when its due, or how to get the invoices flowingh again. Screw 'em. They laid off my blue-haired teller lady and her supervisor, five years before retirement, and I’m going down to the Credit Union because I fixed their well last year and they seemed nice…and they had stamps, a whole roll of them, and no plans for me to make them more efficient.
DirecTV gave me $5 off for going paperless…and I had to beat it out of them. Hey, I like my mailman , I want to see him keep on working. He provides a reliable service… at least on his end. Why would I want lesser service for the same price? That’s the same sunshine they blew up my ass telling me how neat it was that I got right in to see the Physician’s Assistant, even though I paid the same rate as if I’d seen the actual doctor. Customer service is now getting right through to the person who cannot help you, has no idea how to help you, but is skilled enough to keep you on the phone long enough that you think, surely I’ve been helped by now, haven’t I?
I’m toodling down to the Credit Union in the morning because it occurred to me that all their employees looked happy to be working there…something that’s been missing at the bank the last couple of decades. I think it’s because they don’t spend all day having to explain to their customers how they just got screwed.