You may well be patting yourself on the back this week for achieving your tenth birthday, but I fear that an excess of fairy bread and red cordial has gone to your heads and that the nice man in the white coat will soon be giving Mr Branson a big bottle of Ritalin for his Australian team.
I suspect that those who manage your website have been too busy playing Pin the Tail on the Chairman to notice, but your site has had all the speed and functionality this week of a Collins Class submarine in dry dock.
The first indication that all was not well was when I tried to top up my daughter’s mobile phone credit. Your website had obviously been told to go and tidy its room and was in a resultant sulk, doing the bare minimum to avoid getting a smack upside the head whilst remaining stubbornly uncooperative. However, it managed to take the money from my credit card, which it will no doubt spend on lollies, whilst not providing any phone credit.
This resulted in my having to play Musical Chairs around your phone system, leaving me begging the music to stop to give me time to stem the blood flow from my ears. Your selection of music is a cruel and unusual torture that makes being waterboarded seem like an afternoon in the skatepark by comparison.
I became a human Pass-The –Parcel going from one automated system to another until I finally found a grown-up to help me and try and explain why Virgin was helping itself to my money and giving me less in return than a dawn raid from the Australian Taxation Department.
The following day I was due to pay my own mobile phone bill and I once again approached the piñata of delights that is the Virgin website simply to make a credit card payment. Alas the papier maché that holds the Virgin behemoth together proved impervious to my waving a plastic card around and eventually the computer said ‘no’. I tried again this morning – same result.
I then realised that we had entered a new phase of Hide and Seek, where I seek some way of giving you money and you hide before you have to give me any customer service. I attempted payment by phone today. I’m sorry, but I haven’t listened to anyone quite as irritating as the guy on your phone system since my last marriage.
To cut a long bedtime story short, needless to say it still didn’t work and I was told that I would be able to talk to someone about it, but that the phone call would be recorded. What happened then was very rare and very special for the Virgin call centre system. Silence. A void of noise normally only experienced on asking if someone can help you bath the cat.
I relished the absence of infuriatingly earnest and up-beat young bloke in my ear and definitely the dearth of techno music. Actually there was a complete nonexistence of anyone to speak to. I assume someone must have pushed orange jelly into the audio system.
Now, as we know, it’s all fun and games until someone loses an eye. Or in this case, their credibility. I’d like to pay you, but you have made it impossible and I’ve lost the will to play more party games.
I’ll look forward to your response when the sugar high’s worn off.