This is my best tech support story that I posted on my blog:
I worked for Microsoft during the launch of Windows 98. Now, I doubt any of you had to call Microsoft for support, but if you had you would have experienced a minimum 30 minute wait over a toll line. People were paying long distance charges and they weren’t happy about it. As all those in tech support know, it doesn’t bode well for the call when the customer is pissed off before I even get a chance to say my greeting. Me: Thank you for calling Microsoft Product Support & Services. My name is Jax. May I have your name please?
Caller [screaming]: Bob and you can take this piece of **** software and stick it up Bill’s ass.
Me: Bob, I’m sorry you’re having problems but Bill’s unavailable at the moment. Perhaps we can find another option?
(As intended, he laughs a little and seems to calm down. Bob is trying to install Windows 98 and this is his first computer. His daughter bought it for him so he could see pictures of his grandkids. He’s still a cranky old man, but nice in his own gruff way. We walk through a few steps and everything is progressing nicely.)
Me: Okay, Bob, now I need you to empty your recycle bin.
Bob: What? [starting to sound upset] Did my wife put you up to this?
Me: No, Bob. [patiently] Your recycle bin is on your desktop. I need you to empty it so we can move on to the next step.
Bob [grumbling]: Okay. Hold on a minute.
(I’m confused, but I wait. I hear banging and clanging, a door slams and then he is back.)
Bob [still grumbling]: Okay, it’s empty. I still think my wife put you up to this. She’s been nagging me all day to empty that damn thing.
(Now I’m really confused.)
Bob: I don’t know what in the hell taking out the trash has to do with my damn computer, but can we get on with this?
Me: Uhm, sure. So Bob, you just took out your trash?
Apparently, the next day was recycling day in Bob’s neighborhood. Bob had a tendency to forget to sit it out by the curb, so Bob’s oh-so-subtle wife decided to place their recycling bin on top of Bob’s desk. No wonder he thought I was in cahoots with her! Once I pointed out his computer’s recycling bin, we shared a good laugh and moved on to resolve his problem.
But I still laugh every time I tell someone to empty their recycle bin.