so when you say customer service, what you really mean is…?

went to the pharmacy today to pick up my grandfather’s medicine, which he thought he needed YESTERDAY OH MY GOSH WHAT A CRISIS but probably really needed by tomorrow night. but not one to procrastinate (*coughsandlooksforboltoflightningaccompanyingblatantlies*), i headed down there this afternoon.

usually covered by insurance, this particular prescription, because he needed the refill earlier, wouldn’t be. and it’s expensive. i was walking in there expecting the credit card to cry a little when i zapped it through the machine.

i WASN’T expecting it to be declined.


i was in the kroger pharmacy and attempting to spend the $300+ dollars and my card was declined.

that’s never happened before.

let me tell you the emotional process one goes through when one’s credit card is declined. through the exceptional humiliation of having a pharmacy tech tell you that you cannot, in fact, pay for the thing that she just rang up for you, you begin wondering if there is any reason said card should be declined and upon realizing that there isn’t, the annoyance quickly swells to anger and the potential of getting the patented family THIS IS NOT ACCEPTABLE voice on the phone with some credit card representative.

but mainly, there’s the shock horror and humiliation.

so i go out to the parking lot to call said credit card company.

the customer service representative tells me her name (don’tcare) and asks what she can do for me.

i ask if the hold has been lifted off of my account now that i have successfully navigated the electronic gauntlet asking me to verify certain HORRIFYING! AND ABSOLUTELY! UNACCEPTABLE! AND FRAUD DETECTING! purchases like…say…a dollar on itunes.


she checks.

and tells me that sometimes when the amount is above your “typical” spending amount, said credit card company will flag the account formyownsafety.

funny how that own safety didn’t involve, say, a phone call.

but i digress again.

i just wanted someone official to tell me that the flag had been lifted and that i could walk back into the grocery store and make the purchase and did i mention that it was MY GRANDFATHER’S MEDICATION?

i thought i might have.

so she tells me the flag has been lifted, that she has memoed my account to indicate that i was going to make that purchase, and that i should be fine.


then, instead of letting the ANNOYED CUSTOMER go back into the store to make the purchase, she tries to sell me identity theft protection.

i was…speechless.

and i said “no, thanks.”

the first time.

and then she said “you don’t want identity theft protection?”

and i said “no.”

(notice the notable lack of thanks that time. i was stunned that this woman had the audacity to think that a) this was the appropriate time to try to sell identity theft protection and 2) that i was the right customer since THERE WASN’T ACTUALLY ANY IDENTITY THEFT I WAS JUST TRYING TO BUY MEDICATION OH MY SWEET GOODNESS JUST LET ME DO IT THIS IS AMERICA.)

call ends with me annoyed and her apparently judging the fact that i don’t want an identity protection plan that really only helps me investigate and protect other cards since this card is in fact already protected. whatever.

i make the purchase without incident. although now i had to wait in line. but okay.

about an hour and a half later, i pull into an exxon station to try to fill up my car, pull out the credit card that i had used successfully all the way down here, and get the magical message: “please see attendant.”

imagine my surprise.

i hate everyone.

edited to add: i called said credit card company. apparently the incredibly logical idea to CALL people when their accounts seem crazy (CRAZY purchases like medicine. and gas.  oh the humanity.) has been trumped by the idiotically irrational and yet impressively big business-y choice of just declining cards. i’ll be trying my card tomorrow, and if it doesn’t work, i’ll be shopping for a new credit card company.

or just yelling about it on the blog.

either way, good times for you.

One Response to “so when you say customer service, what you really mean is…?”

  1. i have had the random decline because the credit card company was “protecting” me. it was sooo annoying! and drove me crazy. but i guess if it wasn’t me and someone was charging weird things to my card i wouldn’t mind so much. just wish the process could be improved.

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