Thank You For Calling

Thank you for calling Faceless Insurance, Utilities and Mortgages
All of our operatives are currently busy
However your call is important to us and will be answered shortly
Here is some prog rock
To keep you entertained while you wait

If you’d rather not wait, you could just check
The frequently asked questions bit on our website
Although chances are, the question you want to ask
Isn’t listed in the frequently asked questions

Actually, I expect you already checked the website
Most people probably do that before calling
Because who wants to wait 17 minutes for one of our operatives to be free
When you can just check online in a few seconds?
So actually, we’re being more than a little patronising
By suggesting that you check the website
But then some people who call us are a bit stupid
We’re not saying you’re stupid
But we do need to pitch this message
To the lowest common denominator
Here is some pan pipe music
To keep you entertained while you wait

Thank you for calling Faceless Insurance, Utilities and Mortgages
All of our operatives are still busy
They’re surprisingly busy people
It’s almost as if we don’t provide a particularly good service to our customers
When you consider the volume of calls we get each day
It’s highly unlikely that those calls are from people who want to congratulate us
On our excellent standards
It’s far more likely that these are calls from people who want to voice concerns
So you’d imagine that the least we would do is employ enough operatives
To answer the calls promptly and efficiently
Nonetheless your call is important to us
No really it is
And it will be answered shortly
Probably in no more than 22 minutes
Here are some power ballads
To keep you entertained while you wait

Thank you for calling Faceless Insurance, Utilities and Mortgages
If your call is because you want to purchase a new product
And give us more of your money
Then please press 1 and we’ll probably answer quite quickly
If your call is to do with an existing product
Then press 2 and it’ll take us a bit longer to answer
But we’ll still try and squeeze some more money out of you
It’s called up-selling and if you’re particularly vulnerable
We’ll up-sell you products you could never possibly need
And definitely can’t afford
However, if you’re too smart to fall for our attempts to get more cash out of you
Then press 3 and we’ll make you wait even longer
Because we’re really not that interested in speaking to you
And if none of those options appeal,
Then continue to hold and eventually someone might speak to you
But it’s highly unlikely they’ll be able to help
They might transfer you to another department though
And they won’t be able to help either
Eventually, after we’ve transferred you enough times
We’re hoping you’ll give up and go away
But your call is important to us
And we’ll probably answer it in around 35 minutes
Here is some smooth jazz
To keep you entertained while you wait

Thank you for calling Faceless Insurance, Utilities and Mortgages
We can’t believe you’re still here
Clearly we’re never going to answer your call
All of our operatives are busy
Stop wasting their time
They’ve got better things to do than speak to you
What’s your problem anyway?
Your call is of no importance to us
Our operatives aren’t even really busy
In fact there aren’t any operatives
We made them up
No-one has ever called our bluff and stuck it out this long before
Still if you’re really determined to speak to someone
A robot might possibly answer your call in 48 minutes or so
Here are some dubious cover versions of popular songs
To keep you entertained while you wait

The Valentine’s Day Monotony

James Proclaims (4)


As I write this it’s Valentine’s Day. If you’re reading this on the day it actually hits my blog then it isn’t Valentine’s Day anymore because I’m intending to publish this post on Monday. Specifically Monday the 19th February. If you are reading this on Valentine’s Day then it is almost certainly not the same Valentine’s Day that I’m writing on. It’s most likely a Valentine’s Day in the future. Possibly Valentine’s Day 2019, but potentially a Valentine’s Day even further in the future than that, and you’ve more than likely come across this because some search engine has mistaken the fact that I’ve written the term Valentine’s Day eleven times (including the title) in this post as being an indication that this post is about Valentine’s Day.

Which it isn’t.

It’s just that today, February 14th, 2018, I have a reasonable amount of time to kill and I’m trying to get a little bit ahead with my blogging. Because I’m on something of a hot blogging streak at the moment. This will be my 112th post in 112 consecutive days and I’m rather keen to keep the momentum up. But equally, time is a rather precious commodity at the moment and I really don’t have enough of it to dedicate to producing a daily post of even dubious quality without sacrificing some other commitments. And many of those commitments relate to things I need to do for the institution that pays my wages, which in turn I use to pay my mortgage provider, who, as a result of receiving said payments, allows me to keep a rather shabby (and in very inclement weather, leaky) roof over my head. So I’m trying to make the most of those rare occasions when I do have a bit of time on my hands to produce as much content as possible, so that I can continue with the relatively futile and pointless goal of producing something new everyday. Because we all need something to aspire to and this, frankly, is all I’ve got.

And today I do have time on my hands because I’m waiting for someone to knock on my door and collect something. It’s like a kind of reverse delivery. Ironically I wrote about the frustrations of having to wait in all day for stuff in the form of a poem recently. It’s ironic because when I wrote that poem I wasn’t actually stuck at home waiting for something, I was stuck at work, meeting with the parents of the children I sometimes deign to teach (or, y’know, stand in front of and say things at) and I had time to kill between appointments. I thought a poem about a school’s parent’s evening might be a bit niche, so I changed the focus of the waiting to another frustrating waiting situation (am I revealing too much about my writing process here? Because that’s pretty much how I produce most of the rubbish that makes up this blog). Anyway, just a week on from writing that poem, it’s half term and on one of my precious days off  I am actually stuck at home.


But like I say, I’m waiting for someone to come and pick something up.

So after all the waiting I won’t even have a delivery to enjoy.

So far I’ve been waiting for seven hours. The window closes in another two.

Fortunately Mrs Proclaims bought me some rather nice salted-caramel chocolates for Valentine’s Day.

There aren’t many left at this point.

But if it wasn’t for this interminable waiting, I’d never have produced this.

Although after seven hours of sitting around with nothing else much to do but work on this piece, you’d imagine it would be better than it is.


While You Were In We Thought You Were Out


One thing in life
That I find quite frustrating
Is when I have to spend time
Endlessly waiting

For something or someone
That is due to arrive
At an unspecified time
Between 8 and 5

That’s quite a large window
And it makes me feel stressed
To spend a whole working day
Under house arrest

It’s hard to endure
Is it mandatory
To spend so many hours
In such purgatory?

And what is much worse
You can always depend
That the time of delivery
Will be nearer the end

But you can’t take the chance
That it won’t come at the start
So you have stay in
And wait in good heart

Hopeful that today’s wait
Won’t be quite as long
But after several hours
You’ll know you were wrong

And once the delivery
Window has expired
And you’ve wasted a day
And you’re bored and tired

Only then you’ll discover
That you dropped your guard
For at some point today
Was posted a card

That claims that delivery
Was attempted that day
Despite all evidence
Suggesting that there’s no way

That anyone bothered
To ring the doorbell
Or even to knock
So how in the Hell

Did they post that card
Without you being aware?
And why did they do it?
Do they simply not care

That you’ve wasted a day
For a package unreceived
And now all you feel
Is wronged and deceived?

And so after waiting
You’re forced to wait more
But now the delivery
Won’t be brought to the door

After twenty-four hours
It’ll have to be collected
Which is beyond irritating
And you feel quite dejected

Because if delivery windows
Must be so imprecise
At the end of it all
A parcel would be nice