Then after a further day or two, Are-A-Mess phoned me on my mobile to advise that there was another package - a new plastic card - from the same bank, which they wished to deliver. And they did so, less than 24 hours later.
So just when I thought it was all working...
Last Thursday I rang Red Triangles Bank, the bank that is both local and global:
Goat: Hi. I have my new credit card, thank you very much. Where is the other one?
Bank: It’s with Are-A-Mess. We sent it to them on 15 December. Here’s the tracking number.
Goat: OK, thanks. I’ll chase Are-A-Mess to get it delivered.
I rang Are-A-Mess, purveyors of Shop&Ship and also Red Triangles’ courier of preference:
Goat: With reference to this tracking number, where’s my package?
AAM: We’ve been sitting on this since 15 December. RTB didn’t give us your mobile phone number.
Goat: Well here it is.
AAM: Oh, no, Mr Goat. We have to be given your phone number by the bank.
Goat: And you contacted the bank to obtain my number…?
AAM: Certainly not. Policy is to wait until an irate customer calls, then he has to contact the bank.
Rang the bank again. Got cut off several times. Eventually:
Goat: Are-A-Mess needs you to tell them my mobile phone number. Then they can call me to arrange delivery.
Bank: We’ll contact Are-A-Mess and call you back.
Time passes. Thorin sits down and starts singing about gold.
Bank: We called Are-A-Mess, and they’ll phone you on Saturday, or Sunday at the latest, to arrange delivery by Sunday.
Goat: Hi. You didn’t call me. This is the tracking number. Where’s my package?
AAM: Please tell us your location, and we can deliver it tomorrow. Is this your landline number?
Goat: Yes it is. Would it help to use my mobile in case I’m ‘not on my seat’ when you ring?
AAM: We only have your landline number. We’ve had it since December. But not the mobile. You have to get the bank to tell us your mobile.
Goat: So if you had my number why didn’t you call? It’s my firm’s main switchboard, so don’t try to tell me that there was no answer. The only way to fail to get an answer during office hours is not to dial the number!
So who is lying?
- Are-A-Mess for telling me that they had no contact number when they had it last December?
- Are-A-Mess for telling me that they’ve had my number since December, when they only got it last Thursday?
- Red Triangles Bank for telling me that they told Are-A-Mess my mobile number when they didn’t?
- Red Triangles Bank for telling Are-A-Mess my office landline number and then telling me they gave out the mobile?
- Are-A-Mess for telling me that the Bank hadn’t given them my mobile number?
I don’t know who has a tenuous grasp on the truth, but for sure it’s at least one of the above.
Meanwhile, Muggins is stuck like flat-nosed curly-tailed dog in the middle, refereeing between Are-A-Mess and Red Triangles Bank. Both of these organisations (for a given value of ‘organised’) are stuck behind call trees, so being a referee is a time-consuming exercise in frustration and futility. “Press 1 to be ignored; Press 2 to listen to our annoying hold music; Press 3 to get cut off, etc”