It must be Friday night. The overseas call centre phone calls are coming in. I promise myself I won't answer them, but you never know when it might be a constituent, so you answer it. And every time I'm disappointed.
But tonight exceeded all my expectations. The first call was quite short, consisting of a short, completely unintelligible ramble from a female voice with an Irish accent. I recognised "BT" in her murmurings. I asked her to repeat, and this time made out the phrase "...this call is being recorded for training purposes". She began mumbling again, and I had to say goodbye and hang up.
Five minutes later, the phone rang again. This time, an Indian voice confirm,ed my name, and told me they were ringing on behalf of one of my credit cards. Apparently I was £23 over my limit. Could I pay this amount tonight?
"What time is it where you are? I asked. "I know it's six o'clock where you are" she said smartly. "So where would you like me to pay you £23?" I enquired. "Well, if you have another credit card, I can take the details right now..." she suggested.
"So let me get this straight!" I replied "You're suggesting I pay off the balance on your credit card by moving the debt to another credit card?" I asked.
When she said yes, I can't recall which came first - my blasphemous cursing or me putting down the receiver...