Today's stories [10.1.11]
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In The Oregonian, a Meier and Frank department store
advertisement for women's bras and panties reads:
The perfect gift for that special woman in your life,
or great to keep for yourself.
The following are actual stories told by travellers from
Mendocino County, CA to travel agents in the UK. (And you wonder why
US citizens generally score less than the rest of the world on
A man called, furious about a Florida package we did. I asked what was
wrong with the vacation in Orlando. He said he was expecting an
ocean-view room. I tried to explain that is not possible, since
Orlando is in the middle of the state. He replied, "Don't lie to me. >
I looked on the map and Florida is a very thin state."
A client called in inquiring about a package to Hawaii. After going
over all the cost info, she asked, "Would it be cheaper to fly to
California and then take the train to Hawaii?"
I got a call from a woman who wanted to go to Capetown. I started to
explain the length of the flight and the passport information when she
interrupted me with "I'm not trying to make you look stupid but
Capetown is in Massachusetts." Without trying to make her look like
the stupid one, I calmly explained, "Cape Cod is in Massachusetts,
Capetown is in Africa." Her response... click.
A secretary called in looking for hotel in Los Angeles. She gave me
various names off a list, none of which I could find I finally had her
fax me the list. To my surprise, it was a list of hotels in New
Orleans, Louisiana. She thought the LA stood for Los Angeles, and that
New Orleans was a suburb of LA Worst of all, when I called her back,
she was not even embarrassed.
I got a call from a man who asked, "is it possible to see England from
Canada?" I said, "No." He said "But they look so close on the map."
Another man called and asked if he could rent a car in Dallas. When I
pulled up the reservation, I noticed he had a one-hour lay-over in
Dallas. When I asked him why he wanted to rent a car, he said, "I
heard Dallas was a big airport, and I need a car to drive between the
gates to save time."
A nice lady just called. She needed to know how it was possible that
her flight from Detroit left at 8:20am and got into Chicago at 8:33am.
I tried to explain that Michigan was an hour ahead of Illinois, but
she could not understand the concept of time zones. Finally I told her
the plane went very fast, and she bought that!
A woman called and asked, "Do airlines put your physical description
on your bag so they know who's luggage belongs to who?" I said, "No,
why do you ask?" She replied, "Well, when I checked in with the
airline, they put a tag on my luggage that said FAT, and I'm
overweight, is there any connection?" After putting her on hold for a
minute while I "looked into it" (I was actually laughing), I came back
and explained the city code for Fresno is FAT, and that the airline
was just putting a destination tag on her luggage.
I just got off the phone with a man who asked, "How do I know which
plane to get on?" I asked him what exactly he meant, to which he
replied, "I was told my flight number is 823, but none of these planes
have numbers on them."
A woman called and said, "I need to fly to Pepsi-Cola on one of those
computer planes." I asked if she meant to fly to Pensacola on a
commuter plane. She said, "Yeah, whatever."
A business man called and had a question about the documents he needed
in order to fly to China. After a lengthy discussion about passports,
I reminded him he needed a visa. "Oh no I don't, I've been to China
many times and never had to have one of those." I double checked, and
sure enough, his stay required a visa. When I told him this he said,
"Look, I've been to China four times and every time they have accepted
my American Express."
This is a true story from the WordPerfect help line.
Needless to say the help desk employee was fired; however, he/she is
currently suing the WordPerfect organization for "Termination without
Cause". Actual dialogue of a former Word perfect Customer Support
"Ridge Hall computer assistant; may I help you?"
"Yes, well, I'm having trouble with WordPerfect."
"What sort of trouble?"
"Well, I was just typing along, and all of a sudden the words went
"Hmm. So what does your screen look like now?"
"It's blank; it won't accept anything when I type."
"Are you still in WordPerfect, or did you get out?"
"How do I tell?"
"Can you see the C: prompt on the screen?"
"What's a sea-prompt?"
"Never mind. Can you move the cursor around on the screen?"
"There isn't any cursor: I told you, it won't accept anything I type."
"Does your monitor have a power indicator?"
"What's a monitor?"
"It's the thing with the screen on it that looks like a TV. Does it
have a little light that tells you when it's on?"
"I don't know."
"Well, then look on the back of the monitor and find where the power
cord goes into it. Can you see that?"
"Yes, I think so."
"Great. Follow the cord to the plug, and tell me if it's plugged into
".......Yes, it is."
"When you were behind the monitor, did you notice that there were two
cables plugged into the back of it, not just one?"
"Well, there are. I need you to look back there again and find the
".......Okay, here it is."
"Follow it for me, and tell me if it's plugged securely into the back
of your computer."
"I can't reach."
"Uh huh. Well, can you see if it is?"
"Even if you maybe put your knee on something and lean way over?"
"Oh, it's not because I don't have the right angle - it's because it's
"Yes - the office light is off, and the only light I have is coming in
from the window."
"Well, turn on the office light then."
"No? Why not?"
"Because there's a power outage."
"A power... A power outage? Aha, Okay, we've got it licked now. Do you
still have the boxes and manuals and packing suff your computer came
"Well, yes, I kee them in the closet."
"Good. Go get them, and unplug your system and pack it up just like it
was when you got it. Then take it back to the store you bought it
"Really? Is it that bad?"
"Yes, I'm afraid it is."
"Well, all right then, I suppose. What do I tell them?"
"Tell them you're too stupid to own a computer."
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