It was all Amazon’s idea (not Jeff Bezos’ Amazon’s founder in particular) but his Amazon Kindle Team. I know because that’s who sent me the email. Apparently they live in India.
The March email alerted me to a credit deposited to my account due to an antitrust lawsuit regarding price of electronic books. I don’t remember suing anyone. Something like that wouldn’t slip my mind. However, if Jeff wanted to hand out money, I was all in. The Secret Lives of Hummingbirds by David Lazaroff topped my reading list. I logged in to spend my windfall. A few clicks later, my account surfaced.
My balance registered $0. No credit. Not a dime!
Having traveled this road before with AT&T, Xfinity, and Commonwealth Edison, I knew communicating about a specific issue involving them giving me money required diligence, hours, and gallons of coffee (a pitcher of Bloody Mary’s also works). The reverse is not true. Large corporations are as quick as Trump proposing a 15 percent business tax rate when I owe them cash.
Evidently the Amazon Kindle Team doesn’t own cell phones, landlines, or email addresses. Chatting is the preferred method of communication. With a few exceptions chatting is like passing notes across the desk to your friend in class. Only there’s no paper just the computer screen, the desk is more like the universe, and you’re not sure if a teacher intercepted the note or the screen froze.
In my first message I asked what was up. Tempting me with a refund that needed to be spent in 90 days, but didn’t appear in my account. I copied and pasted the email, which the Amazon Kindle Team sent, onto the chat box that appeared on my screen.
Gervilyn chatted with me first. One gander at the length of my chat and she passed it along to Gaddam. I’m guessing that Gaddam was in charge of essays. He wrote he’d, “be happy to help me out, but needed a few minutes to review the content.”
I told him no problem. I was having my morning coffee. It was almost caffeine refill time when Gaddam returned requesting my email address, date of email, and the value of the credit.
I responded with the first two bits of information and wrote that an amount wasn’t mentioned in the email. However I thought it was 3 million dollars, or maybe a little less.
There was a pause long enough for me to refill my coffee mug and change a load of laundry. Apparently he wasn’t buying the 3 million dollar amount because Gaddam came up with $28.64 in a closed subaccount.
I agreed to accept the $28.64 if he could transfer it to my active account. Although I think Jeff Bezos wouldn’t miss the 3 mil since he is the second richest man in the world. (Watch out Bill Gates!) For some reason Gaddam couldn’t do that (or it was time for his coffee break) and transferred me to the “concern team” and lucky Shivani took over.
This is taken from a transcript of the chat. Amazon sent one on request.
Shivani: Hello, my name is Shivani. Please give me a moment to review the previous correspondence.
Anita: I’m still working on my coffee! Just curious, Shivani, where are you located?
Shivani: I am located in India.
Anita: So is it day or night there? How’s the weather?
Shivani: It’s day here, and weather is very hot!
Anita: It’s early morning here and it is wet and rainy! I’m looking forward to warm and dry. Do you have hummingbirds in India?
Shivani: I have no idea about it; apart from that how can I help you?
Anita: Ok, Shivani, there’s $28.64 in a sub account that is closed. I’d like that amount transferred to my open account so I can spend it on a book about hummingbirds. I live in Illinois. We have ruby throated hummingbirds here. (You should really look into hummingbirds. They are marvelous animals.)
Shivani: Do you have the gift card number you want to transfer?
Anita: No, Gaddam wrote about it and didn’t give me that information. I wonder if he’s seen hummingbirds.
Shivani: Give me a minute, please.
Anita: Sure, I’m still drinking coffee. So do you know Gaddam? Are all you guys in the same office, taking coffee breaks together?
Shivani: Anita, I am unable to apply the gift card to your account, but will make an exception since you are a valued customer. You have only one active account now. I don’t know Gaddam. He might be in a different office.
Anita: If I can’t have the 3 mil, I’ll take the $28.64.
Shivani: Is there anything else I can help you with?
Anita: No, I think it’s time for your coffee break. You’ve been busy with me for a while. Keep your eyes open for hummingbirds!
Shivani: Bye and click on “End Chat” link.
Online research disclosed that there are no hummingbirds in India, but the resident sunbird is similar to it. Unless David Lazaroff’s The Secret Lives of Hummingbirds reveals that hummingbirds live there secretly, I steered Shivani and Gaddam awry.