Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Conversations With The Government

The day before Thanksgiving I was late to work and was driving a bit over the speed limit. A cop spotted me and I got a ticket. While I am not happy about it, I usually don't get that worked up over such things and I was polite to the cop, took the ticket and went about my day.

I don't know how it is in all States, but here in Oregon, you have to go to a courthouse and appear in front of a judge in order to deal with your ticket and try to get a reduced penalty. In the mix and jumble of what is my life, I have misplaced the original ticket with some important information on it. Today I called the county courthouse to try and find out some important information that was on the ticket and this is the conversation that took place. I swear on all that is good in this world, you cannot make this stuff up!


Me: Hi, my name is Jocelyn and I got a speeding ticket in November. I can't seem to find my original ticket so I am not sure what court I will need to be going to.

Lady: Well, this is the Hillsboro court - is that the one you need?

Me: Uhm, I don't know. That is why I am calling.

Lady: Well, you need your ticket.

Me: I can't find my ticket, that is why I am calling.

Lady: Well, I can't really help you. We have 12 courthouses in this area and I have no way of knowing.

Me: Can you check in the computer system to see if my name comes up?

Lady: No.

Me: Okay, well, what do you suggest I do since I don't have my ticket and apparently you are not able to help me.

Lady: I don't know what to tell you.

Me: Okay thank you. *click*

SECOND CALL TO OTHER COURTHOUSE:

Me: Hi, my name is Jocelyn and I got a speeding ticket in November. I can't seem to find my original ticket so I am not sure what court I will need to be going to.

New lady: Okay. I will transfer you to the county operator. **transferred**

County Operator: County.

Me: Hi, my name is Jocelyn and I got a speeding ticket in November. I can't seem to find my original ticket so I am not sure what court I will need to be going to.

County Operator: You need to speak to the traffic division. **transferred**

Traffic division: Traffic, this is Lauren.

Me: Hi, my name is Jocelyn and I got a speeding ticket in November. I can't seem to find my original ticket so I am not sure what court I will need to be going to.

Traffic division: Oh, you need to speak to the county operator. **transferred**

Country Operator: County.

Me: Hi, my name is Jocelyn and I got a speeding ticket in November. I can't seem to find my original ticket so I am not sure what court I will need to be going to.

County Operator: Ma'am I just spoke to you - you need to talk to traffic.

Me: That is who I just spoke to and they sent me to you.

County Operator: Well, you need to speak to them. One moment please. **transferred**

Traffic Division: Traffic, this is Lauren.

Me: Lauren, hi - you just transferred me to the operator and she put me back over here and I just need to know if I have the right courthouse.

Traffic Division: Well, I don't know why they did that - they are not supposed to do that. Who did you talk to?

Me: I don't know - some lady.

Traffic Division: Well, I am going to have to send you back to them because they are supposed to handle these types of questions. **transferred**

County Operator: County.

Me: Hi, this is Jocelyn again and I just got sent back to you from traffic.

County Operator: Well, I don't know why they did that - we are not supposed to get those calls anymore. Who did you talk to?

Me: Lauren.

County Operator: Well, the only way to get your answer is to talk to them. Maybe you should just keep calling back until you get someone other than Lauren...

Me: (cutting her off as I breath fire and try not to scream) Look, I do not want to sound rude, but I have now been transferred about 8 times. I am sorry I don't have my ticket but I do not work there and so I don't know how it is supposed to work. What I do know is that I just need to know if I have the right courthouse. Is there any way you can just look me up in the system and tell me.

County Operator: (pause) Okay. What is your name.


Within 2 minutes I had the answer.

It was the right place after-all.


9 comments:

  1. WOW! None of them wanted to do this for you, even though clearly they all can (and should!) Jocelyn, please submit this to the Oregonian editorial page editor. Our Washington County tax dollars (ineptly) at work...

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  2. I hate that people just won't go one bit off the script or out of their way to do what can save everyone alot of time and spare a headache, even though it is not proper protocol, which it ended up being anyways....I think Pamela is right, you should submit it to the Oregonian editorial page. It might wake someone up around there! :) xxoo

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  3. UGGGHHHHH I HATE THAT. Military docs are the same! they transfer me to disconnected numbers all the time...I am really sweet and understanding...but once I get mean, its ON.

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  4. That is so frustrating!!! I hate being transferred all over the place. I always try to be nice about it because you catch more flies with honey. And yes, I just called our government officials "Flies." Yes, I did, and it made me feel oh so much better. :)

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  5. Sounds very familiar. It seems to be common practice these days to pass the buck rather than do one's job. Pitiful.

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  6. that is absolutely hilarious – you were right, you just can’t make that stuff up!!

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  7. Speeding tickets and stupid operators are the worst.

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  8. Hahahahaaaaaaaa.... I'm sorry, but that's just comical. But I understand your frustration. This is the reason why I don't like making phone calls. I hate being put on hold and listening to awful music, or being transferred from incompetent department to incompetent department or hung up on.
    Grrrr... I'm way too nice on the phone.

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