Oh geez. I just called my credit card company to alert them to impending travel, and it went disastrously awry.
“I just need to send you a verification code to your cellphone,” the woman said.
“Well, that would be fine, but I don’t use one,” I explained.
“Let me transfer you to our fraud department.”
I was on hold forever. I wanted to hang up, but I suddenly had this bad feeling, like if I were to hang up, they’d assume that someone was trying to steal my identity. What the hell?!
“Hello. So, you don’t use a cellphone?”
“Nope,” I replied.
“Well… what about the number you gave us when you signed up?”
I recited my dad’s landline.
“Oh,” I said. “Well, it could be my new landline. It’s 502, something-something-something, 7997, or 9779. I don’t have it memorized yet.”
“No! I can’t verify your identity. You’ll have to wait for Citibank to send you mail.”
“Excuse me? What about my vacation?”
“I can’t verify that you are who you say you are.”
“You want to talk to someone other than me?” She sounded offended.
She put me on hold.
“Hello, my name’s Don. You don’t have a cellphone, do you?”
“No, I don’t,” I said darkly. “I’m backward. Us country folk, you know. We don’t go for that newfangled technology, not when we can steal network television with our homemade antennae.”
“I see. You’ll have to wait for Citibank to call you and verify your identity on the phone.”
“I’m on the phone now.”
“Yes, but I can’t verify your identity.”
“I’m sorry. I can’t verify it.”
“What are you accusing me of?” I asked. “I thought this would be a simple phone call, but instead, you’re calling me an identity thief. I’ll have you know that I am not a criminal. I’ve never committed any criminal acts. And I always come to a complete stop at stop signs, every single time. And by the way, so does Meg Kimball, from what I’ve been told. So ha!”
He sighed. “I haven’t said anything other than that I can’t verify your identity.”
“It’s implied. You know how you can read between the lines?” I said. “I went to college.”
“The bank will call you shortly.”
“No, it won’t. Look, don’t lie to me. There won’t be a phone call. I’ll go to my own bank tomorrow, not citibank, and get a travel notice put on my debit card in person. And as soon as I can, I’m closing this card. I called you thinking it would be an easy phone call, and now I feel like a criminal. I don’t deserve that. I don’t care what you specifically said or didn’t say. You’ve treated me like crap, and I just want you to know that I deserve better.”
“The bank will call you soon.”
“Whatever helps you sleep at night. And you think I’m immoral! Geez.” I hung up.
I logged onto my online credit card account. Huh. They had an outdated phone number of mine from years ago. Because, of course they did. [Facepalm.]
Well, I’ll gladly take my business elsewhere!