My favorite bank, a four letter titled institution started giving me a lot of grief lately. The culprit was Customer Service (CS), a hitherto well trained, intelligent bunch of people who seem to have suddenly lost a lot of intelligence perhaps answering calls from people like me or due to working in a bank. My cousin brother who works in bank says it is the former. I don’t believe him though. I think he is just being mean because he hates bank account holders. A sweet lil girl like me can never give grief to anyone.
Me to CS: Your system is not accepting my account number.
CS: You are not an account holder.
My problem was simple. The security system that guards the small change that is deposited every month-end in my account under the head “Salary”, was not allowing me to carry out any online transaction.
“Your salary is laughable,” said the message that flashed before my eyes cruelly every time I logged into my account, followed by a wicked “You are better off begging at the signal light ha ha ha”.
Kidding. It doesn’t say all that. It just informs me in crisp English that I was a moron and should perhaps end my miserable life.
A phone banker actually told me the other day that whenever she gets depressed or fed up of her job/life/hairdo, she takes a peek at my “Salary Account” and promptly falls off her chair laughing. Then she feels all nice. I was very touched by her story and slammed the phone on her face. She called me back just as promptly to inform me that I had a large fan club in the bank. This time she slammed the phone before I could take the lead, thereby taking away the tiny scrap of self-dignity I could scrape out of this situation.
I decided to change my account. The first two banks laughed me off the premises. The other two didn’t let me past the door. The watchmen told me kindly to either buy 1) a Piggy Bank or get a 2) Post Office account.
The last two options were nationalized banks and friends advised against it as most of their account holders were on drugs or under treatment for chronic depression. The rest were all dead waiting for customer service. I decided that I didn’t need another source of misery in my life besides the SMS alert from the bank every month-end alerting me to the peanuts that were being dropped into the account.
So I was stuck with my most favorite-now-fast-becoming-least-favorite four letter titled bank. And that was a scary thought as I had only one bank account. *gulp*
Every attempt to contact them failed as the bank has a 'phone banking only facility', which means you cannot call someone and scream at his face. So you are stuck with Phone Banking, a euphemism for “Hitting yourself on the head with a hammer”.
After you have punched the various keys in your telephone that identifies you, your account number and other details like your past three boyfriends phone numbers, an efficient sounding phone banker picks up the phone and asks you politely to give your name, account number and past four boyfriends phone numbers. After that the person listens politely to your complaints and replies just as crisply as before that she will get back to me soon. I swear she was yawning when she said that. My cousin brother, the one who works in a bank says that I am just assuming things and that she wasn’t yawning. Bankers are alert people he says, who can work 24/7/365 on a cup of coffee and a couple of hundred cigarettes without yawning. I don’t believe him though. I think he is just boasting.
Note to self: Cut him off my will.
And then you wait and wait and wait and after a year of paying bills standing in mile long queues, you suddenly remember that your complaint has not been attended to! You send a furious mail to every email ID on your bank’s site blaming them of really bad customer service, triumphantly touting the compliant date and finally you get a mail asking you to call their phone banking service. And that is when you shift your account to a Nationalized Bank.