One prominent feature on this blog has been how I get mistaken for a woman on the phone (i.e. here and here).
Yesterday, I called the IRS with a question about our taxes.
I keep putting them off, but I'm determined that this year, I won't end up filing them on April 15 at 9 p.m.
After the slow death of the phone queue and the inability of the automated system to understand anything I told it ...
Automated Phone Thingy: Please say and spell your first name.
Me: Nathan. N-A-T-H-A-N.
Automated Phone Thingy: I'm sorry. I'm having trouble understanding you.
Me: Nathan. N-A-T-
Automated Phone Thingy: Let's just skip that question. (I kid you not. That is what it finally told me. I've never had a phone system give up on me so quickly before. Usually it's the other way around.)
... I'm sure the guy who finally came on the line was about as thrilled to be talking to me as I was to be talking to him.
Here's how the conversation went down:
Bored Sounding Federal Employee: May I have your name?
Me: Sure. It's Nathan. N-A-T-H-A-N. (See how well the automated phone system trained me?)
Bored Sounding Federal Employee: Are you Nathan?
Bored Sounding Federal Employee: You don't sound like a Nathan.
Me: ... Uh ... Well ... I am.
I see some sensitivity training in that guy's future, especially since my call may have been "recorded for quality assurance."