Wednesday, December 16, 2009

What I Should Have Said...

This past Saturday morning as I was cleaning my kitchen after a lovely breakfast with my family, you interrupted my bliss with a phone call. "Riiiinngggg.....riiiiinnngggggggg!!!! Hello. This is Mr. Non English Speaking Asshole from A-Holes R Us Collection Agency and we'd like to speak to M.C. please."

Shock was apparent in my voice as I almost squawked, "How did you get this number for HER?!" I barely listened as you explained quickly that you got your information from "several different sources" and that you would remove our home phone number from your call list.

The second I let the handset drop back into its resting place, an overly loud, "SHIT" uncontrollably escaped my lips. I'd  allowed myself to lose my composure and had let an opportunity slip right through my fingers.

So, here goes. This is what I SHOULD have said to you while I had you on the line.

"Are you fucking KIDDING me?! You're calling MY house NINE years after my husband divorced this woman?! You're interrupting the morning with my family so that you can try to collect a bill from a woman who hasn't EVER had this phone number and who has NEVER lived in this house?! Have you ever heard of the fucking INTERNET?! Try typing her name into Google and you'll find out where she works. Open up and type in her name and you'll find her address and phone number. Take a quick peek at her credit report (which you friggin' have access to, you a-holes) and you'll get just about any piece of information you need. But noooooo. You track US down several states away in our new home and call US on a Saturday morning to try to collect a debt from HER. UnfreakinBELIEVABLE.

And, oh. Remember when I had my car accident two years ago and had just come home from the emergency room in an immobilizer and was loaded on painkillers and you rang our doorbell at 2:00 a.m. to repossess HER car? remember. You rang the doorbell on my ten month old home that my husband and I had just built, in order to repossess a car that we had never owned and knew nothing about that was registered in HER name. Sure. I know how you got our address. Her name was listed as a former owner on the car I'd just wrecked. Did you hear that? FORMER FUCKING OWNER! If she'd FORMERLY held joint title on the car, but no longer did, why in the hell would she be at the current address listed on the title?!

You people are not only assholes, you're moronic idiots who have no grasp of common sense and who don't even possess the intellectual ability to use the simplest forms of modern technology. In less than five minutes, I located several of her former employers, found out where she currently works, where she lives and what her phone number is. I also found that she's on and on Facebook, both of which list her location and other personal information.

We've paid all of her bills we're going to pay. Nine years and almost $40,000 later, we are free from any financial obligation ever tied to her. We've endured nine years of letters in our mailbox addressed to her and nine years of phone calls from collection agencies trying to track her down. We made it through the financial shit storm SHE walked away from by filing bankruptcy. We paid debts that weren't ours to pay and at times we were almost crushed by the burden of it. We not only survived those years, we came out on the other side and have thrived in spite of it.

So, Mr. Collection Agency, if you ever call us again, I'm going to be much more coherent and I'm going to tell you EXACTLY how to find her, including drawing you a fucking picture if I have to.

Have a lovely day, and...fuck you."


SJT said...

I hear you on this one. My ex husband of 12 years had collection agencies calling our house this last year. I told them to google him and they would find him. I on the other hand have an order for protection against him. So how they get our numbers....oh and I'm re-married with a new name and am beyond me. And it's really annoying! I feel you pain! Next time really let them have it and the collection calls will stop. Or just cry like a scared baby like I did. It works.

ellen abbott said...

I almost wish they would call you back just so you can let the poor unsuspecting twit have it.

Glynis said...

Oh how I wish they would ring you back and I was a fly on the wall!!

Angela said...

What a wonderful speech. Can`t you SEND it to them? There must be a way (as you are so good at it) to get THEIR address?
In Germany we have a data protection law, and if you feel your personal data have been sold, or fooled around with, you can stir up a hell of a trouble for the guys who are responsible. Tell your congressman about it and demsnd such a law, too. And don`t let them say, oh, but you know, terrorists... NO! This is just unexcusable!
Well done for letting your team off!

Amy said...

SJT Thanks for sharing my pain! I know it happens all of the time, but MAN!! It gets me every time! I'm beyond the crying point. Almost ten years later, I'm just pissed.

Ellen: Me too!

Glynis: The flies on the wall had better plug their little earholes if they ever call again!

Angela: You wouldn't believe the overarching power to torture that collecters have in America! I tried to dial them back, but they had called from a blocked number and my telephone showed the number as "private." My investigative skills were stumped right out of the box!

I actually thought about deleting this post because I thought no one would appreciate my rant, but it feels rather lovely to have put it all right out there! Much to my dismay, though, I've discovered once again that I'm not quite the nice and proper lady I aspire to be.

The Bug said...

I actually WORK for a collection agency (ducks her head in anticipation of the rotten tomato). BUT I work for our corporate counsel as a legal assistant - it's our job to make sure that the collectors don't break laws while collecting. I know that when they're trying to find someone they'll try all kinds of avenues - but really, if you were able to track her down so easily there's no reason they should have bugged you. Bugging you should be a last resort!

Amy said...

Bug: Ackkk! I'm trying to still adore you anyway! Okay, so why is it that I can find someone and collection agencies are lost? It seems they find us everywhere we go, but yet, can't seem to find her. AND, they call asking for her, not to ask if we know where she is. (Neither is desirable.) It's SO frustrating!!

Aunt Juicebox said...

I got sued earlier this year by a collection agency, for a debt that was paid off supposedly by my ex husband, 12 years ago. I got a lawyer and fought back.

If they call you again, make sure you let them know if they continue to call there, you will sue them. Because you can, and you can get money for it too.

@eloh said...

Here's one for the frackin books. About five years ago there was ONE person in the whole world with my name. Obviously it's not Jane Doe.
I had a computer and always got a kick out of this.

Then one day about four years ago, a collection agency calls me...

{I have an ex-husband who likes to open accounts in my name but have been told it is a domestic issue until he fails on any bills.....}

But since I have never used his name and only my birth's easy to tell the difference.

I freaked out on the bill collector that my identity has been stolen and I grab a piece of paper and make him tell me all sorts of things... then I realize that the middle initial is different so I asked him what my SSN# and he gave me some other than mine... he had said he found me through the computer..when he realized he had given out priviledged info.. he was pretty upset with me hahaha He said I had lied to him...I reminded him he had called me.
The address was in the state next door and is in easy driving distance... me and this lady with almost my name who doesn't pay her bills and got this name by marriage ...also less than 10 years younger than I so same age bracket.

So, you say...not so bad...what's the deal?

Cut to last week, just curious so I google my name......pages and pages.....seems with her endearing personality she just robbed the fricking town. Great, just great.

I'm waiting for the marshals to show up and drag me out of my bed.

Amy said...

Aunt J: Okay. You're my go to gal if they call back again! I've already fought the IRS and lost horribly, but I don't think anyone wins against them! It's these dopey collectors who can't seem to do anything but chase their tails that really chap my arse.

@eloh: I read your comment on my Blackberry while I was in the car and was laughing so hard I couldn't see. Only you, my bloggy friend, could this happen to. After reading your blogs for awhile, I have determined that you have lived the exact opposite of a charmed life. It's amazing that after all you've been through that A.) you're still alive to tell the tales and B.) you still manage to find the humor in it all. Thanks for sharing!

Wendy said...

Were you able to find out what happened to her neck? It seems to be missing.

Amy said...

Wendy: I'm quite positive that there's just not a camera lens with a wide enough angle to capture it in a photograph.