Posted by: guinness222 | November 1, 2008

“Are you just stupid??? …..Watch my lips!”

About six months ago I got one of those “pre-approved Credit Card” deals in the mail. Since I’ve been trying to rebuild my credit in preparation for the end of the world, I figured “why not”, so I called the number, got a sweet lady who helped me out and said my new card would arrive in about a week, which it did. And that’s where the saga begins!

     It had a letter with it that indicated my credit limit would only be $250, AND the “set-up fees, first month billing fees, etc.etc.etc.” were $127.00 and had been charged to the card for my convience (?) Go figure, I can’t see it being “convienent”. So I picked up the phone, dialed thier “800” number and told the young lady who answered the phone to “just cancel it, I don’t need it, I don’t want it, and I can think of at least 53,562 other places I can put my “$127.00″ ” She told me that was a different department that handled cancellations, and she’d transfer me to them, ….BUT she had the power to waive about $80 of the $127 over the phone and would be glad to do it if I liked. (DUH! Of course “I liked”, kill it.) Well she sweet talked me into keeping the card, (and I wanted to be sure the $80 really went away as she promised). The next month I get my bill, and sure enough the $80 credit was on it. So I said “Well,….I’ll hold on to it til the end of the year and dump it before the renewal date next year, and avoid a sure fired “renewal charge” of equally outrageous proportion.

       So like all my bills I go ahead and set up an auto-draft to pay the other $47 of the balance, hence bringing the card to “zero”. I stick it in a drawer so it’s out of site and go about my business. The next month I get another statement. This one shows the payment I made to zero the account, and a balance due of $14! (something about “fuzzy math” went through my mind) I figured I probably missed a fee or a number or something so I went ahead and set up another payment of the $14 and figured I was done with it. Another month goes by, God’s in his heaven, the stock market is plunging, I know every process server in the county by first name for forclosures (not on me, but on clients of the various Condo’s and Homeowners Associations I manage),…..so I go home one evening and there is another statement from these guys!

       I open it up and sure enough my $14 payment is shown as applied, BUT there is a balance of ANOTHER $14 at the end of the statement. Now I know I paid the $14, so I’m wondering if thier printer is “stuck” on $14,…but in any event, it’s become too much of a pain in the ass to even play with anymore! So I go to thier web site, click the button to “Cardholder Assistance” Where I get a little “comment box” to tell them the nature of my request. So I write them a nice polite note telling them I have set up the payment of the entire balance of ANOTHER $14 and upon receipt of it from my bank on Monday to please terminate my account and close it. Now that is pretty straight forward, not hard to understand, no big words other than ‘terminate”, and everyone who knows Arnold Swartzenegger knows what that means as well. End of case, request entered, and I asked for an e-mail confirmation that it had been taken care of,…with a “please” and a “Thank you for your prompt attention to this matter”.

      Again back to real life and moving on,…..that is until this morning. Part of my boring Saturday pre-pub routine is to check on all my accounts, balances, etc. reconcile everything and try and determine how many pints of blood I will have to sell this week to breakeven and keep all the platees spinning. So out came my little analysis pad and i start the process. (Do it all by computer! Go to web site for the banks, credit card dudes, etc, and reconcile them to my Quicken program and make sure all is in synch.  On a lark, I remembered I hadn’t heard back from the Credit Card Company I broke up with, so when it came up on my radar I clicked in. “You have mail!” appears when I enter thier web site, so I click and find a note from them to me asking me to reconsider, but if I decided not to I would have to call the number below to formally end our relationship. (Relationship? I’m not dating my credit card!) then it provided a fifteen number referance to this transaction and is stamped “completed no further action required” (Oh yeah, I’ll show you “further action.)

       So I call the “800” number, have to be subjected to the whole “push your right ear for you balance, pick your nose for you last payment amount, yadda, yadda, yadda down to “To speak to a Customer Service Represetantive press 0 ” Then you get the “Due to the high volume of calls we are experiancing,…” bull shit and are placed in queque again. (Automated response translation: “We got one dude handling all the calls, most of the time we’ll never make you happy anyway, and since you waded through all our horseshit to get this far you are probably pissed! So we’re going to let you cool off a bit before we deal with you, besides the dudes are all on coffee break for another five minutes!”) Finally a “blonde” picks up the phone (How do I know she’s blonde? NOONE can be that happy and “bouncy” voiced dealing with pissed cardholders for an entire shift, even you r very first call.) Of course she can’t help but “Derrick” can assist me if I don’t mind her transferring me to Derrick.

        Another three or four minutes the “Derrick” comes on the line, “And how are you today Mr. Guinness, and you don’t mind if I call you Arthur P do you?”

      “Frankly Derrick I don’t care what you call me, just close my account, terminate it, end it, and let’s be done with each other.”

      “Really, I’m surprised to hear that. ”

     “Derrick, don’t be surprised,…just close the account.”

     “Well I have to ask you a few questions first, but before I do that may I ask why you would want to hurt your credit?”

     “Excuse me?…”hurt” my credit?”

     “Of course, we report every month to the Credit Bureaus and when they see an account closed it triggers the FEICO notation on the account,….too many FEICO notations and your credit score slips.”

     “Well ,ah..Derrick was it?”

     “Yes Sir, Derrick with two r’s”

     “Well Derrick with two r’s, forget the FEICO notation, but beware of the PSYCHO you are talking to and score he’ll put on your head if we can’t get this done,…like now!”

     “Well if you feel that strongly about it.”

    “I damn well do,…Derrick with two r’s.”

    “Well, there will be a $7.00 closing fee, and …another $7.00 draft fee to draw the money from your bank account.”

   “DO IT Derrick with two r’s. Do it NOW!”

    “Well I’ve gone ahead and made an entry, but you have 90 days inwhich you can re-open the account for a nominal charge of,…”

   “Let me guess,…$14 a month and another $7 to draft it from my account, Right?”

   “Yes sir, but I would strongly urge you not to close…”

   “Derrick? Is the account now closed, officially, and all that stuff?”

   “Yes sir, but…”

   “Thank you Derrick with 2 r’s,…and have a nice day!”

         If I ever see their logo on another envelope in my mail box I might just “go postal”! (Time to see if the Blood Pressure Meds have kicked in yet. Have a nice day!

-30-


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