13 Jan 2004

The Fiddler on the Roof


There’s one of the aerials sitting on the top of my PC; they’re awful, like a cereal bowl on a lamp-stand.

I had a little smile to myself when I thought about Rod Hull, Emu’s other half, who fell off his roof when trying to fix his TV antenna. An internal aerial could have saved his life and rescued him from a legacy of sick jokes.

(My favourite: What were Rod Hull’s last words?
“Quick Emu, grab hold of that gutter.” – you can have that one.)

Mary has been sat in the corner of the office all day, listening to calls, and shaking her head. She called me over. “Listen to this.”

I put on the headset and listened attentively to the call. It was John Doe taking an order for a CD cabinet. The more I listened the less I could hear. I couldn’t work out what the problem was, but I still shook my head in disapproval and tutted. It sounded like a perfectly reasonable call.

Mary referred to her spiral-bound notebook. “He didn’t use the customer’s name. He didn’t check the order numbers back to the customer. He said that the CD case was beech. It isn’t.”

“It isn’t?” I said.

“It’s beech EFFECT. There’s a difference.” She continued. “When he said the number of CD s it could hold, he didn’t qualify it.”

“He didn’t.”

“He should have said, ‘It could POTENTIALLY hold 78 CD s.’” She closed her notebook. “It’s little wonder that we are getting complaints. The operators are making bold claims about the products that we cannot substantiate.”

I didn’t think that it was a good time to mention the potential life-saving quality of the indoor aerial.