Why does every call to every Customer Service Department start with a warning: “Please listen carefully as our menu options have changed?”

Restaurant menus don’t change as often as phone options. And by the time they recite all eight options, you forgot which number to press.

“This call may be recorded for training purposes.”

After the millions of calls, you’d think those call center people from all those foreign countries would be trained by now. And instead of training them, they should teach them to speak English.

“For security purposes, please provide your name, address, phone number, the last nine digits of your social security number, and your secret password.”

You quickly run through all those requests, but the synthesized voice returns, “Sorry, I didn’t get that. Please repeat it all again, and speak slowly and clearly.” So, you repeat it ever so slowly and over-pronounce each word and number. And then, “Sorry, that doesn’t match our records. Let’s try something else. What is the first name of your maternal grandmother’s first boyfriend?” Of course, you don’t know it, so you say, “Wojciech”

“Thank you.”

“Due to higher-than-normal call volume, caused by the poor performance of our products and everyone here catching Covid after the keg party last week, there may be a delay in reaching someone who can help you. We apologize for the delay. You are number 792 in the queue, and your approximate wait time is 167 minutes.”

You then get a recorded message from a female voice talent who had too much coffee. She exuberantly describes all 28 benefits of the company’s product. But you know she’s lying, because you’re calling about the product not living up to any one of them. Then the recording plays the military march by the North Korean Symphony Orchestra.

And finally, after just 166 minutes, the voice returns and says,

“Thank you for holding. Please press One for English.”

Pressing One does not mean you will connect to someone who actually speaks English, at least not the version of English you can understand. The pronunciation is skewed, and the grammar is brutal. “Goose mornering. Who do I pleasure to has to speak today?”

Having awakened from my coma, I answer, “Michael Fracciocomo.”

“Herro Mikielfacoccomo. And what your last name is?”

And that’s when I had to order a new phone, and a new front window.