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Trapped in Online Purgatory

October 21st, 2023 by Michael Dyet

Hmmm, when I blow my cork, will you be a character witness for me?

If you hear a news report along the lines of the one below, it will probably be about me. I may need character witnesses to dig myself out of trouble.

Police were called to a Hamilton neighborhood today after multiple reports of a man roaming the street, wearing only house slippers and a track suit, gesturing wildly and ranting incoherently. When asked what the problem was, the man replied:

“What’s the matter? I’m in online purgatory! They sent me a new credit card which had to be activated. Should have been dead simple! But oh no, not a chance. When I went online to do the activation, it said I had to change my User Name first. Really? That’s a hassle. It was a perfectly good User Name.

“So I created a new User Name. But then it said it had to send me a security code. Really? Just to change the User Name? All this damn security business. That should be their responsibility, not mine. I should get to charge them a fee for inconveniencing me!

“Anyway, I had to enter my old User Name and my birthdate to get the damn code. It e-mailed me the code. But I went back to enter the code, that screen had closed on its own. Three times that happened! Three bloody times!

“So I switched to having the code sent by telephone. Got the damn automated message with the code and entered it. Smooth sailing from there, right? Hell, no!! When I went to log in with the new User Name, it said the password was wrong! I’ve had that password for years and suddenly it doesn’t work? What the hell?!

“So I tried to reset the password. Same damn rigamarole! Enter the User Name and my birth date to get a security code. Another friggin’ security code! How secure are they if they give them out like Hallowe’en candy?

“So anyway, I do it. Now it says my User Name is incorrect! How could it be incorrect? I just created the damn thing five minutes ago! Now I’m totally screwed! User Name won’t work. Password won’t work. What the hell am I supposed to do now?

“Call tech support? Oh sure, spend ten minutes wrestling with the answering system to find the right option. Then wait a half hour for somebody to be available. When I finally get some twenty-something techie from offshore on the line, he’ll tell me I could have used the Chat Support. I don’t want to talk to a damn robot!!!”

Police reported that the man was babbling incoherently at this point and seemed to be losing his grip on his sanity. They had no choice but to take him into custody. When attempting to do so, the man blew his cork, took off his slippers and began beating the police officer over the head with them. Charges are pending.

Long story short, the cheese is sliding off my cracker. I may need character witnesses for the competency hearing.

~ Now Available Online from Amazon, Chapters Indigo or Barnes & Noble: Hunting Muskie, Rites of Passage – Stories by Michael Robert Diet

~ Michael Robert Dyet is also the author of Until the Deep Water Stills – An Internet-enhanced Novel which was a double winner in the Reader Views Literary Awards 2009. Visit Michael’s website at .

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