Answering Machines

How many companies are there that do not constantly put on their answering machine:

1. “We are experiencing high volume of calls”- if it’s constantly higher than expected maybe they should update the expected?

2. “Please listen carefully as our menu options have changed “- if it constantly changes when was it stable that it has to be changed? Also why do they assume you called before and even memorized the menu options? If it’s my first time why should I listen carefully?

3. “We are currently attending other calls. Your call is important to us. Please stay on the line and a representative will attend to you shortly” – how do they know it’s ‘shortly’ if your place in line is 12? Do they have a software that if your place is less than 5 it’s ‘shortly’ and otherwise they take off this word? I don’t think so because all of them put the word ‘shortly’ all the time.

4. “Please let me know in a few words what are you calling about” – almost any way you are going to describe the issue will not be one of the options. The most annoying ones are those that after you yell ‘representative’ reply with “ I understand you like to speak to representative but first in a few words tell me what you are calling about?”

5. Keep the representative option till the end to make sure you listen 5 minutes to the menu options? And the worse are those that give representative option different than 0. For those who try to outsmart the system and press immediately 0.

6. Representative asking exactly for the same details you typed into the phone like account number? The number hasn’t been changed in the last 3 minutes… so maybe it was just another way to earn time before transferring you to a representative?

7. “For account balance press 1, For check transfer press 2,…….,For all other options please stay on the line” – how come I usually find myself with the “other” options?

8. If you need to talk to the answering machine shouldn’t there be one that expect different accents? Like it should ask: if you are Indian press 1, if you are middle eastern press 2, if you are Chinese press 3, if you are Hispanic press 4, for all other callers including white American, African Americans, and any other minority’s which lives in the US more than 10 years and speaks with a reasonable accent please press 4. Anyhow, The word representative is kind of long and there is no way you are going to pronounce it without your accent. Can’t they find shorter word to make it easy for accent people? ‘Anyone’ sounds much better. If you like to speak to ‘Anyone’ please stay on the line.

Groupon canceled customer support phones

A big company like Groupon canceled their customer support phones. The only options they give is chat/email/call back in 24 hours. This is the first time I think such a big company take such a step. According to the names of the guys in the chat they moved the chat support to India/Mexico. They probably got read of all the American phone operators because they earned the minimum wage $9-$10 and caused unnecessary expense in the balance sheets. I just had a chat about minor thing which took 45 minutes compared to a 10 minutes phone call.

It’s amazing how some companies treat the advanced technology as a substitute for human interaction. Until you have Artificial Intelligence which can provide phone call experience like a human being those actions are way before their time. As usual big decision makers live in a dream that technology is ready to replace everyone. It will happen but let’s wait 50 years. Let the next generation handle the mass unemployment.

When Robots become Standup Comedians

One day robots will replace not only cashiers in wholefoods but everyone, including standup comedians. And then, their jokes will be something like this:

“Yesterday a human came to me and told me ‘you stink’, I told him ‘Am I the one that poops?’

“I am fed up with all those humans that don’t know the square root of 2,345,549. I mean, I know we should help them but how about go to school? Ohh, I forgot, they go 16 years to school, every day, and still stuck in the square root of 49. The advanced even know the square root of 121″

“I dated a human girl for a few months. She fell in love with me and wanted to get married. I told her ‘with 16 CPUs why should I commit to someone with one CPU. What am I supposed to do when you have your 8 hours maintenance every night?’

“Yesterday I saw a dead cat on the road and started crying. A human came to me and told me ‘Get over it, it’s only a cat’. I told him ‘patience, I am still in the subroutine CRY no more than 30 seconds’

“A human asked me ‘Why didn’t they program you to have kids?’, I told him ‘Would you want something that is smarter than you and have better technology? I mean robots don’t start from a state of being dumb like your babies’

“I saved a human that had a heart attack. He said ‘You saved my life. What can I do for you?’ I told him ‘How about extra battery?’

“A human came to me and said ‘we are bored, you took all our jobs’. I told him ‘you are bored? Try being able to calculate how much is 2,245,378 multiplied by 6,754 in nano second but explain a first grader how much is 2+2 for one hour?”

“A human came to me and asked ‘Do you know what is to believe in God?’ . I asked him ‘What is believe?’

“A human came to me and said ‘At least we don’t crash like you’. I told him ‘At least we restart after 5 seconds. Do you restart after we dig your graves?’

“A human told me ‘I don’t like your new operating system, it is not user friendly’. I told him ‘At least you suffer until my next upgrade. I am stuck with you for 80 years’

Thank you for coming. Please don’t forget to get your free upgrade on the way out. I heard at last the humans listened to our requests and programmed us to say ‘Shut your mouth!’ when they annoy us. Please come to my next show ‘Humans, Do we still need them?’

Junk Emails

Today is a sad day. I didn’t receive any junk email. I used to spend 30 minutes before sleep unsubscribing from distribution lists. I called pharmacies and told them I don’t need Viagra. I replied to all money offers that say $1,000,000 is waiting for me in some bank account and told them the amount should be $1,078,347. I won. For a few minutes I felt satisfaction but then I understood I just lost my meditation time of clearing junk emails. I can’t wait for someone to put my email address in some website that promise not to share it.

FB Profile Picture

How come if your profile picture is the same for long time, Facebook tells you maybe it’s time to change it. After the age of 6 I kind of grasp the notion of time passing by and not sure I need a responsible adult to remind me of it. Do they want to make sure people are not in denial of their age? Why rub salt into the wound? Or is it just another reason to have traffic on the network? I am planning of keeping the same profile picture until the age of 84. Then I will ask someone to replace it with a picture of my grave.

Why the default GPS voice is a woman voice?

I wonder why the default GPS voice is a woman voice?

I wonder how many people change the default to a man voice.

I also wonder what would have happened if the default was a man voice. Would most of the people will immediately look for ways to switch it to a woman voice?

They always said that men don’t like to get driving directions from a woman. So how come they accept it from a GPS woman? Is it because she doesn’t exist? I wonder if they would be OK with actual GPS woman sitting near them on the passenger seat and giving them instructions?

I wonder why the default for movie trailers is a man voice. What is so special in the man voice that makes it superior to a woman voice in movie trailers?

Why can we hear man say “story full with blood, pain, tears and romance. Story about a person that keeps fighting against all odds” while on the other hand we hear the woman say “turn right, turn left, make a u turn”?

Actually I tried switching my GPS voice to a man voice and it was a weird experience. I immediately felt I can’t stand him and that he is bragging only because he knows the way better than I do. I switched it back after 5 minutes. How come women are OK listening to another woman giving them directions?

I wonder.

I wonder when is a good age to start regretting my life

Since I am not doing much with my life, I have time to read all kinds of motivational quotes hoping that I will stumble upon the quote that will change my life. “Life before the quote” and “life after the quote”. I see myself in the future sitting in front of the journalist and answering the question “so when was the time you decided to drop everything and become a race car driver” and I will humbly smile and answer “it all started from this quote I read 10 years ago”.

I think I am now very familiar with all those quotes that I can  write my own article which will be a random mix of quotes I know. I might be a failure myself but that doesn’t mean I can’t coach others to be successful people living meaningful lives. Whenever they ask me what I am doing for a living besides coaching them I will just say “let’s just say I am waking up every day with a smile.” And I will smile.

I think I will start with the quote ” Choose a job you love, and you will never have to work a day in your life” by Confucius. This could have been THE quote that makes the difference for me. However, I am still stuck on traffic every day on my way to a job I just tolerate and not love (and that’s also on a good day). So I guess it didn’t work out for me until now.

But before I become a coach I need to figure out one quote that really bothers me. Usually, it is not used as a quote by itself but more as an extension to existing quotes. It goes something like,

“We have one time on this earth. Don’t wake up and realize you are old and haven’t done the things you dreamed about”

Now, I am all for the idea it’s good to regret things you didn’t do when you were younger. I am a firm believer that people should be punished and suffer in their lifetime for not following their dreams. It’s a good introduction to the hell that is waiting for them after they die. The problem I have is with the definition of the word ‘old’. When is exactly the age that “from there it’s too late?” The age from which I should start sitting on a lonely bench in some park and regret my life? Is it 64? 39? 75? 29? 119?

It bothers me since I don’t want to wake up one day and figure out it’s about time I start regretting.  I’d rather know how many years I have before the time comes to mourn about my missed life. I would love it to be a nice age like 85 since there is a good chance I won’t be here to stop everything and start sobbing. It also gives me a few good years to follow my dreams. After all George Eliot said “It is never too late to be what you might have been”. For him there is no good time to enjoy beating yourself up. I guess you can still become a pilot in the age of 97.

But the only reason that made me spend 8 minutes of my life writing this is I read the  quote:

“Don’t wake up and realize you are old…”

with a specific age.

“Don’t wake up and realize you are 60 years old…”

Let me read it again. 60 years old. 60????

The article was titled “Advice from old people”. Although the picture showed someone that looked 88 the quote mentioned the age of 60. Which makes me think the writer was 27 and it should have been titled “Advice to some old people” instead of “Advice from some old people”.  The writer advises people older than 60 years old to go to sleep and never wake up if they don’t want to spend their time crying about their lives. It wouldn’t be such a big of a deal if the blog was another one of those popular blogs being read by 7 people. As of now the view count is 3, 669, 143 (!!!). Statistically, taking into consideration the age distribution in the world, around 15% are older than 60. Let’s assume mainly young people are wasting their time reading motivational blogs. It still leaves us with around 10% of “old” people who read the advice. Let’s also assume 9.9% of them didn’t follow their dream (according to the last research made by myself of how many people fulfilled their dreams in their life) and let’s add 0.1% of those in the ages of 58 and 59 that planned to join a university and get a degree and now understand it’s too late for them. That leaves us with around 370,000 people who read the so-called “advice” and right now are shedding tears about their miserable missed lives.

The writer implies that once you get to the age of 60 it’s too late. You are done. No more soup (dreams) for you.  Even if your life dream was quitting your job at the age of 60 and moving to some beach house in Hawaii, it is too late. Better start packing, but not to Hawaii. It’s time to get going as the death train is about to leave. I guess for different people the line between living your life and looking back at your life crosses at a different age. For the Beatles band for example the border is 64. After all, they wrote in their great song “Will you still need me, will you still feed me, when I’m sixty-four?”. They are kind enough to give you four more years to purse your dreams. John Lennon was murdered at the age of 40 so he is not part of the equation and we shouldn’t disturb his peace. George Harrison died at the age of 58 while he was still young and living the life. Paul McCartney, 74, and Ringo Starr, 76, are spending 10/12 years respectively being too old. Maybe they should re-write the song and change the age to 83. This will give them a few more years to stay young.

I now have a dream. To wake up 60 years old, learn French and sign myself into a famous cooking school in France. Graduate at the age of 64, just before it’s too late according to the Beatles, and become a chef in one of the most prestigious restaurants in France. Sit every evening in a different coffee shop spending my time people watching with my beautiful French girlfriend.  Then if the guy who wrote this article is still alive I would give him a call. Not sure he is going to answer since he will probably be in the regression phase, sitting in some basement busy moaning about the missed opportunities in his life. But if he answers the phone I will say “I know you are busy being a grumpy old man but I wanted to tell you something.  I decided to ignore your recommendation, follow my dreams at the age of 60 and guess what? I made it. I made it!!!” then I would slam the phone and tell my girlfriend “so, where are we going tonight? Or maybe we could stay home and have some fun?”

Now that I think about it I kind of like the fact that I am going to start following my dreams at the age of 60. I can go to sleep and waste my time doing nothing for the next 14 years. I can at last enjoy life as I will take a break from trying to maximize my life potential and just enjoy my time on earth. Don’t try calling me 14 years from now. I will be on my way to France.

By the time I finished writing the text above the number of views of the blog advising the 60 year old people to gather their families for the last talk jumped to 3,666,449. Well, 3,666,445 if we don’t count my multiple views. That is 402 views in around 10 minutes. Forty more people who feel sorry about themselves and looking to jump from some roof.

Note: For the 3 people who took a break for a few minutes from their dreams pursuit and read the useless text above I first would like to apologize for doing it to you. Anyhow, if you want to waste another 2 minutes – this time out of your own will –  there is a link below to the “Advice from some old people” article. Advice number 16. Just take into consideration it might reach the 4,000,000 views once you read it so take a calculator and update the numbers above. If you share my post, please share it with people 60 years old or older. If you share the blog below, please make sure you share it with people 55 years old or younger. For people 55-60 years old you can share both.  The only thing which makes me sad is the blog below has ruined the mood for 370,000 people and I will only help 1-2 people.

I wonder when is a good age to start regretting my life.

 

http://imgur.com/gallery/ygq7RK8