In a shocking event earlier today, a user of the popular ebay auction site and the commission-taking PayPal site almost died as a result of using the two services together to sell some tat he had found in his basement.
Arthur Thrills, a long-term resident of Luton, had discovered some Bedford truck memorabilia in his basement - well actually it WAS a Bedford truck, and in pristine condition.
Deciding to sell it on the popular auction site, and claim payment through the PayPal system, the sale was fraught with difficulties caused by a purchaser who, frankly, arsed around.
However, when Mr Thrills reported the problem to both ebay and PayPal, they not only replied immediately, but also phoned him personally and sorted the problem out within half a hour, depositing the money in his bank account, sending him a box of chocolates, and his wife some nice flowers, which Mr Thrills has promised to lay on her grave when he visits it next week ....... the flowers and not the chocolates that is, because however much he thinks flowers are a waste of money, at least he can scoff the chocolates.
Sadly, this excellent service from an organisation which doesn't provide their own telephone numbers and normally appears not to have any humans working for it, because you can never can get a sensible response, was too much for Mr Thrills, and this afternoon he suffered a coronary, broken leg, embolism, sprained wrist, dimentia and a headcold. He also became long-sighted and partially deaf.
Speaking from his hospital bed in a corridor of the Luton General Hospital, he said:
"The trauma of receiving a reply from this huge money-making machine, er, I mean, ebay organisation, was simply too much for me, and my body couldn't cope.
"When you send a query or complain to ebay, you shouldn't have to suffer immediate customer service. You should be made wait for at least 72 hours, and even then receive the computerised and impersonal answer to a question you haven't asked.
"It is the equivalent of a bank manager giving you an umbrella when it is actually raining, or George Galloway saying something nice about Israel.
"You just don't expect this sort of customer service from the ebay organisation, and it really was a shock to my system."