Punishment By Culture

Ruby: Ginger?! WHAT. DID. YOU. DO?!

Ginger: It’s not my fault. I think. What are we talking about?

Ruby: I sent an email to you and got an out of office. It said you are unable to respond to emails, as you are “currently being punished by internet providers who are stubbornly opposed to higher learning opportunities on the job.”

Ginger: Oh, that. You should really be proud of me.

Ruby: I need to know what you did.

Ginger: I did NOT make anyone cry.

Ruby: I………am actually very proud of you for that.

Ginger: Thank you. It took a lot of effort on my part.

Ruby: What DID you do?

Ginger: I attempted to inject culture into the customer service representative’s life.

Ruby: What happened? Start from the beginning.

Ginger: My internet stopped working.

Ruby: Just randomly and without warning?

Ginger: No. There was lightning and thunder and a popping sound and a little puff of magic smoke that appeared above the modem.

Ruby: Oh, wow!

Ginger: Yeah, turns out even the genies that are enslaved in the modems don’t want to stick around when lightning strikes.

Ruby: …you do know that puff of smoke wasn’t a genie, right?

Ginger: Obviously.

Ruby: Okay.

Ginger: It was a djinn. Anyway, I called the internet company that is run by demons with delusions of grandeur and was put on hold for ten minutes before Customer Representative Aaron answered.

Ruby: Wow, that’s specific.

Ginger: Well, I remember his name because it’s the first name in the phonebook.

Ruby: No one uses those anymore.

Ginger: I do.

Ruby: Papier-mâché doesn’t count.

Ginger: Oh.

Ruby: Anyway…what happened next?

Ginger: I told him my modem was struck by lightning and it wasn’t working and he asked me to confirm my phone number.

Ruby: Ginger, the actually do need that.

Ginger: I said it and he asked me to confirm it again and I said it again and he said that wasn’t the phone number on my account.

Ruby: …..okay, did you have another phone number that you provided at some point?

Ginger: Nope. And I said as much. And he stopped speaking to me, but I could still hear him typing and so I asked him to respond. Repeatedly.

Ruby: Did you use words that are unladylike?

Ginger: Despite my baser instincts, I did not. Instead, I grew annoyed. And so I began reading to him from the nearest book.

Ruby: …what book?

Ginger: Fahrenheit 451, by Ray Bradbury. I gave him the title, author and began on page one…because I was prewarned that the call was being monitored for future review and training purposes.

Ruby: Huh. How far did you get?

Ginger: Three pages before he hung up.

Ruby: Huh.

Ginger: There’s a lot in those first three pages.

Ruby: So what did you do when he hung up?

Ginger: Called back. Explained the situation again to the next representative who read from a script a lot.

Ruby: …and?

Ginger: A technician will be out to repair the modem this week.

Ruby: I’m pretty sure you can’t “repair” lightning struck modems.

Ginger: I repeated “lightning strike” as often as possible. She heard it on the fourth try and said she’d make a note to the technician to bring a replacement modem.

Ruby: Okay. But why does your out of office say you’re being punished?

Ginger: Because now I keep getting calls from the internet company asking if I could recommend other classics while they’re on lunch breaks.

Ruby: What?

Ginger: Yeah, they want to start a book club or something.

Ruby: You only bring this upon yourself, you know…

Ginger: I know….


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