It was Saturday night. In the office, Papa and Jax were bonding. Papa was watching a chick flick on his computer, and Jax was on the couch watching Scooby Doo on the iPad. Moose, as usual was running around naked, except that this time he had a squeaky ball that he was taunting Rooster with, and Rooster was so worked up that he looked like he might have a heart attack. (Rooster is obsessive about the squeaky ball.) And I was sitting at my desk with a glass of chardonnay, trying desperately to find the serial number on the computer because the &@#! battery had kicked the bucket, and what’s the point of having a laptop if the battery doesn’t work?
I pulled out my magnifying glass and found the number conveniently (NOT) located on the bottom of my computer. What I was unable to find was the model number, and in order to conduct a live chat with a Gateway customer service rep, you need a first name, a last name, a serial number, a model number, and an email so they can send you the transcript and probably add you to their
spam marketing distribution because they know if your battery isn’t already dead, it will be soon, and you might be enough of a sucker to buy a new computer.
I finally gave up the search and entered a bogus model number, commencing to live chat with Gateway. The transcript that follows has been peppered with Jenny editorial commentary for your reading pleasure.
Hi, my name is Pragyaparamita Nagaswamy. How may I help you? Oh, Lord, please take me now.
Jenny: First of all, I’m not sure that this is the correct model number. I don’t know where to look. But I do have the correct serial number.
Pragyaparamita Nagaswamy: I understand your concern. Whew! I was concerned that you wouldn’t understand.
Pragyaparamita Nagaswamy: Please be assured I will provide you with the required details. I assumed that you would. That’s why I’m contacting you. WHERE. IS. IT?!
Jenny: Where can I find the correct model number?
Pragyaparamita Nagaswamy: I will provide you with the correct information. Didn’t you just say that?!
Pragyaparamita Nagaswamy: May I confirm the serial number: lxpe603004933287j81604?
Jenny: The 3 in that number should be a 2, so the correct # is: lxpe602004933287j81604.**
Pragyaparamita Nagaswamy: Thank you for correcting the serial number. The pleasure is all mine.
Pragyaparamita Nagaswamy: I have checked for the model number from the serial number provided and the model number is NV78. I’m starting to have faith.
Pragyaparamita Nagaswamy: May I know the exact issue with the computer to help you better? Good idea. We’ve already wasted 10 minutes and a glass of wine on preliminaries.
Jenny: Thanks. I’ve had this computer for less than 2 years and the battery is dead.
Pragyaparamita Nagaswamy: Sorry to know about the issue. Yeah, that makes two of us.
Pragyaparamita Nagaswamy: I really apologize for the inconvenience caused. You can stop apologizing now and give me a new battery, and while you’re at it, a bottle of wine for the inconvenience. Or cash. Cash is always good.
Jenny: How long is a battery supposed to last?
Pragyaparamita Nagaswamy: Jenny, as the battery is a electronic component the life of the battery cannot be determined. Say what?! Isn’t the whole computer an electronic component? Is there a different warranty on the plastic parts? And they say plastic is cheap.
Pragyaparamita Nagaswamy: However, as the battery of the computer is completely dead the battery is malfunctioning. Are you smoking hashish or something?
Jenny: What’s a typical lifetime?
Pragyaparamita Nagaswamy: The typical lifetime for a battery is for 1 year. Holy shit! Have you ever heard of an iPad?
Jenny: You’ve got to be kidding me!
Pragyaparamita Nagaswamy: No, Jenny.
Jenny: How do I get a new one?
Pragyaparamita Nagaswamy: The battery life cannot be determined and can be approximated to 1-2 years. Can you hang on a minute? I think I need another glass of wine.
Jenny: The salesman didn’t tell me that.
Pragyaparamita Nagaswamy: And depending on the usage the battery can last longer. Sure.
Pragyaparamita Nagaswamy: I will provide you with the necessary information for battery purchase. In this lifetime?
Pragyaparamita Nagaswamy: Here is the specification for the battery shipped along with the computer: BATTERY 6-CELL LI-ION 4400MAH.
Jenny: Can I get that at Target?
Pragyaparamita Nagaswamy: And the part number for the battery is BT.00603.042.
Pragyaparamita Nagaswamy: Mundo corp Direct Phone number: 888-278-7500 Hours: Mon-Fri 8:00 AM-5:00 PM EST Skyline phone support number: 888-393-7223.
Pragyaparamita Nagaswamy: Please call the above number and order the original part. They are the authorized resellers for Gateway parts. Authorized dealer = mucho $$$.
Jenny: Can I get it at WalMart? Walmart sells EVERYTHING.
Pragyaparamita Nagaswamy: Here is the weblink for the authorized resellers of Gateway.
Jenny: Where do you live, Pragy?
Pragyaparamita Nagaswamy: I am located at southern part of India. I got the country right. I just didn’t recognize the southern accent.
Jenny: Ahhhh. How’s the weather there?
Pragyaparamita Nagaswamy: It is cool here.
Pragyaparamita Nagaswamy: Here is the weblink for the finding the authorized reseller for Gateway products: us.gateway.com/gw/en/US/content/where-buy.
Jenny: Really? It’s hot as hades here and there’s a hurricane headed this way. Second one this season.
Pragyaparamita Nagaswamy: The weather over there will soon be changing.
Jenny: Thanks so much, Pragy. Hope everything is blue skies and daisies for you.
Pragyaparamita Nagaswamy: Thank you.
Pragyaparamita Nagaswamy: And same to you.
Jenny: Merci et bonne nuit.
Pragyaparamita Nagaswamy: It was a pleasure to work with you. I thank you for contacting Gateway live chat.
Pragyaparamita Nagaswamy: Bye and take care. Thank you for being patient with a wine-slugging insane woman. And for the record, this 1.5 year battery life is BS (that stands for bullshit, Pragy).
Jenny: You too. Bye.
It was Saturday night. Syline wasn’t open, and I was suspicious about what they would charge. I ordered the battery from Amazon for $37 + shipping, so all’s well that ends well, or it will be if the battery arrives and actually works.
The morale of the story: if you’re unemployed, but count good manners among your skills, move to India. They have a lot of jobs over there.
*This isn’t her real name. I didn’t want the poor woman to Google herself and discover that I’d had a little fun at her expense.
**This isn’t my real serial number either.