Friday, February 26, 2010

Hideous Music

Today, terror struck my heart.

Well ..... hokay ..... it wasn't so much terror as it was the fear I'd been put on interminable hold.

A hold from which there is no release.

A hold of which you cannot relinquish .... because if you do, you'll just start the process all over again. You would be required to start anew ... and there's nothing on God's green earth you can do about it.

A hold you sigh audibly over because you know "they" have you. By the short hairs.

Of course, I'm talking about telephonic purgatory.

I called my daughter's school Friday morning. Paperwork was required. I spoke with "Nancy". She was very accommodating. "Yes ... if you don't mind holding, I'll see if I can locate that for you right now and I'll have a copy waiting when you come in."

I thanked her and was immediately put on hold.

That's when my heart froze.

It only took a few chords and I knew what the music was.

It was the hold music of which I was oh, so familiar when I was dealing with EarthLink (my internet service provider at the time) back in April of 2009.

And May of 2009.

And June of 2009.


It was that exact same music I was submitted to each and every time an Indian-accented employee of EarthLink asked if I would kindly wait for a few minutes while he looked up my account. And those minutes turned into tens of minutes.

Many tens of minutes.

Which turned into "I almost have all your information pulled up, Sir, just another minute or two." Or twenty.

For two and a half months I was placed in an Escher-esque netherworld of time displacement ... an otherworldly, gray cipher of time. I spent a huge amount of my April / May / June, 2009 in between nothing and frustration, slow burning all the while.


And then Nancy came back on the phone after little more than 23 seconds. "I have it right here. You can come pick it up when you pick up your daughter this afternoon."

The fog lifted and I felt the cobwebs of my mind swept away, dissolved by the disconnection click of my phone.

The hackles on the back of my neck slowly receded and I breathed easier.

..................... Ruprecht ( STOP )