Here’s a question for you: Suppose I have a cell phone. (I do!) Suppose I decide for one reason or another that I no longer want my cell phone. (I won’t) I call AT&T and after I’ve punched a series of numbers to talk to someone who I probably cannot understand and who cannot understand my southern accent, I explain to them that I’m canceling my cell phone. It’s over . . I no longer have a cell phone. Now . . here’s the question. How long before AT&T gives my number to someone else? Just guess . . tell me what you think.
Here’s the story. Vince decided a while back that he wanted a cell phone. Don’t ask me why. After a couple of months, he still hasn’t set up his voice mail; he still doesn’t know how to do more than answer the darned thing. He gets lots of practice answering the phone because someone had his phone number before Vince got it. Let’s just call this person Joe (not his real name).
Joe’s friends call day and night. Joe’s friends don’t believe that Joe no longer has the number. Joe might have some unsavory characters looking for him. Joe told someone that he wants one of his puppies and it’s now time to pick up the puppy. Dang it . . they want that darned puppy picked up NOW! Some of these callers . . well sometimes they’re just not very nice. And, some of these people have now resorted to sending text messages .. which cost us money!
Last week I called AT&T. My first question was “How long do you hold these numbers before assigning them to someone else?” You won’t believe their answer. When someone cancels their number, we put that number in a bucket and then when we need a number, we pull one out. So, I could cancel my number and it could sit in that bucket for months or it could get pulled moments after I’ve canceled it? Yes.
Her advice was that we pay an extra $10 or $20 per month for text messaging so we wouldn’t be paying for these texts for Joe. Are you serious??
And, you want to know what the really bad part of this is? We know Joe! Joe doesn’t know that we have his cell phone number, nor does he know about all these calls we’re getting but I can tell you . . if I were Joe, I’d be pretty darned embarrassed!
One more thing . . you’d better seriously hope that you never get the phone number Chad has. My phone rings about once a month. Chad’s rings continuously!
I still think we should go back to the days when there were no cell phones and no TV’s.