The Service Counter.
Posted by Exile on May 1, 2007
I had the great misfortune to have to pay a visit to the local Post Office today. It is nothing more than a pre-fabricated type building mounted on pallets, but it is all that we have in this suburb of Copenhagen. We had a huge red brick Post Office once but I daresay that net-banking killed it. That and e-mail.
Our Post Office is not big. Staff of two. One male, one female. Niether one is too bright. The State decrees, equality in the workplace. If one is, shall we say, slow, then so is the other. The thing is, that on entering the P.O. you have to go to a little machine and press a button. The button is clearly labelled, “Service Counter”. The little machine then squirts out a ticket with a number on it. Above the service counter is a small digital display. When the number on the display matches your ticket, it’s your turn to use the service counter.
How very quaint. Organised. Civilised, you may say. No cheating or jumping the queue. One has been given ones place. All are equal in the eyes of the machine.
My ticket number was 567. The display was showing 534. That puts me at number 33 in the damn queue. 33. Yep, 32 people in front of me. And within five minutes there were 20 behind me.
I am a fairly busy guy. I have things to do. Places to be. Errands to run. This is done in what I, and other normal people, call their “free time”. You know, when they aren’t at work, or minding the kids or whatever.
Let’s do a bit of math here. Let us assume that the amount of time one neeeds at the service counter is two minutes, on the average. More, if you have a lot of those bloody annoying giro bill things to pay and parcels to send and a thousand and one stupid questions for the not so bright P.O. person, who doesn’t know the answer and can’t help you anyway. Less, if you really are switched on and only need a minimum of help. Two minutes is adequate. Multiply by 32 and you will see, that I had to stand and wait for 1 hour and four minutes to pay one lousy bloody bill with my credit card.
Which took me 30 seconds.
That just ain’t fair. I had to give up over one hour of my free time to use 30 seconds of the P.O. persons time. Actually, it was one hour and ten minutes. One of the P.O. persons went for coffee in the middle of everything.
I demand a recount! They should have to pay me for all that free time I wasted standing in line. Life is too short for this crap. I will never get that hour back. It is gone forever. Wasted at the bloody Post Office.
This is SERVICE?
I think I should write to the Postmaster General. By e-mail!
Thank the good Lord for my Netbank connection.