24/7/365

(My Norwich by-election post has been updated)

Phoned my bank’s call centre today, to confirm the change of address and such like….Not as straightforward as I thought. The young girl with a sing-song Norn Iron accent informed me address change was carried out by a different department, to which I was connected. Prepare to have a new password and pin to hand, said the recorded voice: I scrawled both on a notepad. There was a click, an ominous amount of total silence, and then a recorded voice informing me that “The other person has hung up….The other person has hung up….”

Attempt two was a few minutes later. A bloke with a James Nesbitt accent apologised for the disconnection, putting me through to the same department with the preperation warning. This call was answered by a mature-sounding woman with no sing-song lilt to her voice at all. She asked me for my password, which was not the same as the one on record, being as it was brand new. My phone banking has been suspended for years, I helpfully advised, so that’s the new one I was asked to prepare. It turns out that address changes can only occur with passwords, but not new passwords, only old ones.

Could I change my password? Only if I had the previous one. But that’s forgotten, so now what? There was actual silence, the kind you know means the amount of training given did not reach to this sort of “mobius loop” logic situation. She tried another tact – could I at least give it a go, there are two chances to guess. I have had my phone banking suspended for not being able to remember anything so doesn’t that suggest I have no chance of guessing it now? I swear the sound of a guide book being flicked through could be heard in the background. These guys are customer support experts, they do it all day, every day, no break, there is no logical situation they cannot resolve.

Except this one.

“If we’re at this situation I may as well hang up then?” I offered. Mature woman agreed. We said our bye-byes, and I hung up.

My credit card bill will fall on the mat of an empty house. Effectively it has been falling into the teeth of my shredder, so in some ways there is progress. But in case this has any long-term negative consequences I will attempt the simple act of changing my address again, face-to-face, tomorrow…