Thursday, November 10, 2011

A Special Shout-Out to the ATL

I. Hate. The. City. of. Atlanta. And not just because I did something stupid like park facing the wrong way on a residential street with zero traffic. I understand the extremely dangerous situation that I was creating by doing this and profoundly regret my reckless disregard for the law. In a city where murder, armed robbery and assault happen on, say, a minutely basis, I really feel guilty for being such a menace to society and not doing my part to make this a safer place to live. I'd like to personally thank Officer Small (I'm not lying) for not only showing me the error of my ways but for really taking the time to explain what I had done wrong. You went above and beyond the call of duty by not only marking the Improper Parking box but also including a "Violation Description" as well as some personally added thoughts about the situation my car was creating.I'm not denying my wrongdoing (though truth be told I do this all the time on residential streets and I'm not sure I knew it was illegal) but I have a massive problem with the way that my blood pressure just spiked while trying to "give away" my hard earned money (I was babysitting) to an incompetent government. It is simply inexcusable that it took me 34 minutes to give away $25. In THREE separate phone calls.

I'm assuming that the front of this parking ticket pretty clearly shows that it was issued by the City of Atlanta Municipal Court. In the shot below I'd like to illustrate how the City of Atlanta leads one to believe that paying parkings tickets is as easy as one two three.Those who get these parking rewards appear to have the option of paying by phone, by mail or on the internet. How convenient! The City politely requests that those rewarded pay with in 14 days. I grudging signed onto the website about day 6 and was told that my ticket had not been entered into the system. Same as on days 8, 10, 13 and 16. How am I supposed to pay a ticket that is not entered in the system. Ohhhhh, you expect me to CALL you and beg to pay for it.

My 3 Phone Calls in Summary:

Call #1: Placed call, waited through 8 minutes of phone prompts before I was disconnected.

Call #2: Placed call, waited through 13 minutes of phone prompts before finally being transferred to customer service (I use this term very loosely). Lady answers the phone.....

Lady: "Hella"
Me: "Hi, I'm trying to pay for a parking ticket I got weeks ago but has never been entered into your system for some reason" (because you are stupid).
Lady: "Citation number please"
I give it to her
Lady: "That ticket is not in the system"
Me: "I am very aware of that"
Lady: "Look at the top of your parking ticket. Does is say City of Atlanta Municipal Court"?
Me: "Yes"
Lady: "Does it tell you to call 404-XXX-XXXX"?
Me: "YES"!
Lady: "That's not the right number".
Me: "You have got to be kidding me"
Lady: "MA'AM I AM TRYING TO HELP YOU. THE NUMBER YOU WANT IS 404-XXX-XXXX"!!

Click.

Thanks for that. Personally I think I'm the one that should be shouting at you.

Phone Call #3: Place call. Enter another laboriously long stream of phone prompts. Enter citation, what do you know, it was in the system. Do you want to pay for your ticket? Yes. Enter credit card number, expiration date, security code, hair color, eye color, weight and mother's name. Was asked if I want to accept this charge on my credit card or decline it. Seriously? Accept. Thank you for paying your parking fine with the City of Atlanta. You have been charged $27.50 to your Visa card. This includes a $2.50 CONVENIENCE FEE for paying over the phone. Goodbye.

I will never get those 34 minutes of my life back but I am thinking of suing the City for the overages that will most likely be on my cell phone bill this month. Where is the cork screw?

4 comments:

J, T and Theo B. said...

LOVE IT. truer words have never been spoken. so frustrating. of course, you are lucky that they didn't try to jack the fine up since you missed the deadline by 2 days even though the ticket had the wrong phone number on it. atlanta. sigh.

Gleatie said...

I think they did it on purpose. And I'm being dead serious.

The Bethell Family said...

LOVE! and my favorite - "hella" it could have been "hellar" which we get a lot as well hahha

morgan823 said...

So sorry you had to pay a very stupid ticket (I couldn't agree more) but your posts always make me laugh! LOVE IT!! If it makes you feel any better a guy rear ended me this morning and because I didn't have my current insurance card the cop tried to give me a ticket even though I have insurance! Sometimes you just have to wonder...