Reader Rant: Crapple

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In honor of the post-present hangover that many of you are probably trying to cure right now, Gizmodo is publishing the funniest, most harrowing stories of support line woe. Bring us your hobbled products yearning to be returned for a hefty re-stocking fee. Mail rants to gizmodobox@gmail.com with "READER RANT" in the subject line.

Scrapple from the Crapple

After years of working on a PC at my job, I finally switched to an iBook last year. We had a wonderful 367 days together, but last week, to top off a holiday depression, transit strike, and breakup, I got an error message about a start-up script followed by a gray screen every time I tried to start up my computer.

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The genius of my two hours on the phone with customer support is that while we were chatting (and by "chatting," I mean "me sitting there on hold crying hysterically"), I missed two phone calls from a 916 area code that I assumed were from someone I was expecting a call back from. Eventually, customer support had me wipe out my hard drive and reinstall the system, meaning my computer is at TekServe for at least a week while they try to recover data and my livelihood as a writer/editor from home. Today, back at a terminal at an office I sometimes work from, I looked up the number and nearly gouged out my eyes with rage. Unbelievably, I called it, and here's what it says:

"Thank you for calling Apple Computer. From time to time we contact customers to introduce them to new products or services..."

a) We're already in contact—on the OTHER LINE.

b) Do you have anything available that doesn't SPONTANEOUSLY SUCK?

I'm sure this "ironic" twist wasn't so ironic—the system probably put my number in the telemarketing queue as soon as the customer service woman input it. But, in summation, ARRRRRRRRRRRRGH. I know my story isn't singular in its suckiness. Everyone who's dealt with tech support has a horror story to tell, so please, help pass the holiday blahs by posting yours here. Get it out good. Let us know your pain. And hey, happy holidays!

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