I think I may have gotten the single stupidest call of my professional life just now. And to say that it’s left me thinking, “There really is no justice in this world,” for the last hour, is no exaggeration.
Sometimes, in my line of work, I need to request records from hospitals. And when that happens, I send out a request, on our official letterhead, which has DCS’s office address in both the header and the body of the letter (take notes, kids, this will be on the test later), for these records to be mailed to [attorney’s name] at [office address] no later than [the day before the next court date].
Pretty straightforward, yes? Seems like these are pretty clear instructions, don’t they? Records are needed. This is who needs the records. This is where you send the records. This is when we need the records. I fail to see how any of this is confusing, even to someone who is, perhaps, a few tacos short of a combo meal.
At least, I used to think that. Oh, sure, once in a while, some up-their-own-ass records keeper would get pissy because “you didn’t send the verified petition [which we stopped sending because it’s usually four pages long and the records people either didn’t want to search for the judge’s signature or get their fax machines clogged up], you sent the approval [which is one page and bears the judge’s signature at the bottom], so we can’t send it to you!” At which point I will inform them that, on the advice of the hospitals’ records managers, DCS changed the packet and the court order included with it to the approval, and that this change took effect in January 2019, so there’s no reason they should not have been informed of the change or that they should complain about it now, two years after the fact. For exceptionally stubborn cases, I also include, “Of course, I wrote your name down at the beginning of this call, so if you continue to refuse a court order, I can note not only which hospital refused to release the records, but which employee, so if you want to keep refusing the court order, fine by me; I won’t face any legal consequences, since I can prove that I made a legal and good-faith effort to obtain the records, which was needlessly obstructed. You won’t be so lucky.” (And yes, if the continue to refuse, I ask to speak to their supervisor.) But that’s someone being petty for for the sake of being petty. Whatever. I have better things to do with my time and more important things to get pissed about.
Today, I got a voicemail from the director of a rehab hospital’s records department. She asked me, “How can we get these records to you?”
Again, DCS letterhead includes our office’s address ON IT. TWICE. The first time is just the address. The second time in the line, “Please mail these records to [attorney’s name] at [office address].” IN THE BODY OF THE LETTER. In bold, underlined text.
So I left her a (polite and professional) voicemail back, reiterating the address and the attorneys’ name, and also giving her our office’s fax number, in case that was more convenient.
I would almost prefer a petty power trip to this type of total idiocy. At least a power trip requires some semblance of intelligence.
But this? This is why I believe that voicemail to be absolute proof of the dearth of justice in this world. I make $756 after taxes, each paycheck, and apparently, that’s all I’ll ever make and the only job I’ll ever have, since I’ve been applying to higher-paying but similar jobs for almost a year and not heard back from any of them. Dis bitch probably makes $75,000 a year as a records manager, and she can’t even follow the chimp-simple, straightforward directions in the letter.
Even better? While I was writing this, she called and said, “So the letter said you needed the records by December 31st, do you still need them?” Okay, that is a completely fair question, but that’s not the one she asked. Had she asked for clarification on whether the records were still needed, I wouldn’t have written this at all. But she asked “how do we get these to you,” which is NOT “do you still need them”. ASK THE RIGHT QUESTION, PEOPLE, PLEASE.
In conclusion: Can we stop promoting and hiring stupid, mediocre people who are good at schmoozing and networking, and maybe start promoting and hiring intelligent people who do their work properly, and don’t need to be constantly surrounded by other people and involved in mindless small talk 24/7? I have no problem with extroverts or mindless chatter on principle, but as a reasonably intelligent and diligent introvert of few words, I am getting a little tired of being passed over because I don’t want to chatter and party all the time.
Last updated January 21, 2021