Sunday, June 4, 2023

C. Stroup: Unwanted music to my ears

Hear me out on this…I’m thinking about posting a contest online to see who can come up with the absolute worst music people are subjected to while on hold.

I’ve had the music blare into my ear (if you can call it music) loud enough to make me drop my iPhone. Being able to turn the volume down on the iPhone is a blessing. And the cacophony that follows is nothing more than an annoying dissonance. (I’d rather listen to opera and believe me I’m not a fan.)

Then a recorded voice comes on and says your wait time will be 20 minutes, but don’t hang up. Those words strike fear into my heart because I realize I’m at the mercy of their auditory stimulus and the only dog I have in this fight is being able to turn the volume down on the iPhone.

We all know what comes next…your call is very blah, blah, blah. I’m embarrassed to tell you that I have waited on the line, but just one time, for one hour. That was basically due to the urgency of my call and the soothing music that accompanied the wait. But that’s the only time I can recall the notes being pleasing.

With all the awesome music on the radio, TV, Pandora, Sirius, just to name a few, where in the world do all these companies get their phone recordings? They must send someone out who is tone deaf to seek and find the worst of the worst. Just talking about this has a myriad of distasteful soundtracks rolling around in my head. And when that recorded voice cuts in again and thanks me for my patience, well I find it presumptive that they think I have any.

And as if the wax in my ears has not been jarred loose by now I can choose to endure more abuse by staying on the line…or I can always leave my name and number and someone will call me back shortly. Shortly has a different definition for me than the recording. I mean when was the last time you experienced a “shortly returned phone call from a company?” At least when they do call back, you get a person and no raucous refrains.

As distasteful as I find the phone music, I hum along with the “while you wait” jingles from “Jeopardy” and “Wheel of Fortune.” I find these to be happy little ditties. Kudos to Merv Griffin and Alan Thicke, pioneers of the Wheel’s theme song starting over 40 years ago. And more accolades to Merv for “Jeopardy.”

But I digress. The fact remains the “wait on hold music” is unwanted music to my ears and a far cry from the old fashioned euphonic elevator melodies (and oh how I miss them)!

C. Stroup
C. Stroup
Cindy Stroup is a Double Oak resident and has been contributing to The Cross Timbers Gazette for over 30 years. Read her column each month in The Cross Timbers Gazette newspaper.

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