Contributor Valerie Moreno – “Please Wait”

Recently, I had to call a governmental agency and was trapped in a maze of menu choices that had me yelling at the robotic voice.

We’ve all been there, and it never gets easier, does it?

I’m always impressed with the choice of ads or music chosen to entertain us while waiting. Music that could be termed “The Dull-Dead Strings Ensemble” has me gritting my teeth or falling asleep within five minutes. It’s much easier to wait if there’s lively music or an oldies song playing. At least then you can sing along.

Voice-prompt menus are frustrating and sometimes hilarious. My husband’s slight Spanish accent always seems to confuse the so-called all knowing computer. “I’m saying I was born in Arizona, not Montana!” he’d often scream. Heaven help a random cough or sneeze! After a quiet “ah-choo,” the robotic voice asked, “Norman, Oklahoma. Is that right?” Perhaps it might be useful to find out what guttural noise my city sounds like.

If you’re fortunate enough to reach a human being after five rounds with the robot, try remembering why you called in the first place. By this time, I’m normally too aggravated or laughing too hard to think.

May there come a day (soon) when phone menu choices become shorter, clearer, and quicker–and they’re all equipped with spunky tunes to listen to as we’re told to “please wait.”

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