Noah had a doctor’s appointment.
A smiling nurse, about my age or maybe a little older, called him back for vitals. She weighed him, then stood him up against the wall ruler to measure his height.
She put her finger above his head.
“He’s…right here. What is that? It’s…right between 4’10” and 4’11”.”
Noah and I looked at each other. I wondered if she’s trying to do that silly adult thing of quizzing Noah’s abilities on fractions. Or my abilities on fractions? I am not sure.
She continued to puzzle out loud.
“It’s right in the middle between them. What is that?”
She tilted her head and stared at the ruler.
Noah, trying to make things simpler for her (but not as simple as to just give her the answer because he knows you don’t get that kind of help in math), said “Well I have my shoes on, so I’m probably 4’10” without shoes.”
She shook her head. And wondered. Then shook her head again. Noah and I grinned at each other.
“I’m just going to have to ask. I’m new here so I’m still learning. But I promise we’ll get that figured out before end of your visit!!!” She gave us an encouraging and confident head nod.
Is she trying to work some calculus function or index BASED on his height? Surely there’s more at play here. So I asked. “Get…what figured out?”
She took us to our room and I could hear her urgently and confusedly talking to the other nurse.
Then she came back in our room.
“I’ve got it figured out!! He’s 4’10” AND A HALF. The other nurse was like ‘ummm that’s a half…’ and I was like ‘oh!!!’”
She left the room again.
Noah tilted his head. “Why was that so difficult?”
“I have no idea, son. No. Idea.”
At our next doctor’s appointment, he had to be difficult yet again and be 4’11 1/2″. Fortunately, the other nurse measured him and figured out that tricky half right away.
I had to call Lowe’s customer service.
I hate calling customer service.
I will happily spend three hours on chat to avoid a five minute phone call, but Lowe’s didn’t have a chat option.
A chatty lady answered the phone.
“This is Lowe’s, what can I help you with?”
“I just need to cancel an order. I tried calling the store directly but after 15 minutes on hold they hung up on me.”
“Oh yeah to be honest we’re not even allowed to call the stores anymore because they never answer. But lucky for you I have this great system now – I can EMAIL the stores for you and get it done!!”
“I do love a system that works…”
“Great! Let me just pull it up.” (type type) “You wouldn’t BELIEVE the call I just got off of. The man just COULD NOT BE pleased!! He spent twenty minutes telling me about his complaint (for which she spent 10 minutes giving me the recap) and I offered him every solution I could (for which she told me in detail) and none of them were good enough for him!! I mean, what did he want?? What did he think I could do? I can’t just magic genie a replacement for free for him!!”
ooh boy this is going to be a good one.
“So why do you want to cancel this order?”
“Because I found out that the brand was expensive to fix and breaks often.”
“I understand completely. Don’t you just get so frustrated when companies don’t do what they’re supposed to? Right now I am so mad. I subscribe to a box of monthly panties, and it’s been TWO MONTHS and I haven’t gotten my box yet! And I know there have been two boxes because my sister has gotten both of her boxes and I’ve seen what’s in them. I keep calling and saying ‘WHERE ARE MY PANTIES?!’ and they won’t admit that they haven’t shipped them. And – well, the thing is – I just can’t wear Victoria’s Secret panties like everyone else. I’m of a certain age where the waistbands just roll down as soon as I pull them up and I’m like ‘nuh uh. I WANT MY PANTIES NOW, PLEASE.’”
“Um, yes, exactly that.”
“So that last customer service call I got – I just can’t quit thinking about that guy. I mean, I am not even a homeowner yet myself – I don’t see how he thought I was going to be able to do anything to help him!!”
I was at a loss for how her panties or home ownership had anything to do with my request but for the first time in my life I was glad I made the phone call instead of using chat.
And I sincerely hope that a quality control agent somewhere in the depths of Lowe’s enjoyed that conversation as much as I did.