Thursday, February 28, 2008

I'd like the Birth Certificate Combo Meal...

I went on several wild goose chases over the phone today. One of the missions I was on had to do with getting Aiden's birth certificate. ( This is so we can get his social security number, because someone at the hospital dropped the ball, I guess...b/c it's been two months and his S.S. # card hasn't come in the mail yet... We need it so we can do our taxes, so we can get our refund, so we can get a new dishwasher to put in the house that Jack built.) After harassing several people at the hospital to make sure that I had exhausted our luck there, I was told to call our probate court. I looked up the number in the phone book, only to be told that it was no longer in service. Ah. So I tried a different county office, hoping they could help me get in touch with the probate court. THAT number was disconnected too! It turns out the yellow pages book was an unmitigated WEB OF LIES. Um... actually it was two years old. But good grief- not every phone number should be wrong in a two year old phone book!

So I ended up calling information and asking for the number. Surely, I would be safe with the good old 411. I had to nearly scream my request into the phone because they had one of those maddening systems where you have to speak to a robot whose favorite phrase is, " I'm sorry. I didn't get that..." I was relieved when they said they could automatically connect me with my desired number, if I just said yes. YES! No more number dialing for my poor little worn out digits. Besides, the whole time I was trying to multi-task and was feeding Aiden, so the less fine motor skills I had to perform, the better. Ah...the phone is ringing...soon I shall be conversing with a bureaucrat who will help me...

"Hello, this is Taco Bell..."

I kid you not.

Now, I've been known to crave a chalupa or a gordita on occasion. Don't get me wrong: I like Taco Bell. Just not when I'm trying to order a birth certificate. THE 411 WAS WRONG! Does
" ----- County Probate Court" sound like "Taco Bell" to you? ( Let me give you a hint- the name of my county does NOT rhyme with either of the words " Taco" or "Bell." )

And the next number I tried was wrong too. It was some gallery whose employee sounded distinctly hostile.

Good grief.

So I felt like I had performed a small miracle when I finally got through to the place I wanted... which was thanks to the probate court's WEBSITE. Where would we be without the wonderful world wide interweb? I will never trust the phone book, nor call 411 again. EVER. I have learned my lesson: don't think that you can hold the infant and put the phone on speaker and dial away. No. You'll be on the phone all day that way. The computer is your ONLY HOPE. Put the baby down and merge onto the information superhighway.

4 comments:

Michael said...

"unmitigated WEB OF LIES"

(Laughs outloud in study lounge)

Amy said...

We have a stack of phone books over there, most of them current. They are lovely in their decorativeness...I haven't actually looked up a number in an actual book with pages in years. It's all about the internet. I especially love when you can email whatever department it is you're trying to contact and avoid that whole phone call thing altogether. The internet is my friend.

KJ said...

Poor you... yet you retell it in such away to provide humor for the rest of us... how kind :)

And is this why you're "seriously annoyed at the federal government?"

Hope Aiden gets his 9 digits someday soon so he can be officially in existence - although, if he doesn't get it, can anyone steal his identity? Oh. But you need it for your taxes too.... :)

Lori said...

Didn't you know there are monkeys working at 411? They disappointed me only days ago!