Operator: Hello Serco Fire Service; your safety is our top priority, how can I be of service to you on this very fine day.
Victim: Hello? My house is burning down!
Operator: Well you’ve certainly come to the right place, will you be wanting us to send out a Fire Truck?
Victim: Yes! Please hurry, the fire is moving so fast!
Operator: That’s absolutely fine, let me just fire up the computer system as it were
We just need a few details. Firstly, there is a call out charge which must be paid up front, so I’ll just need you to get your credit card out and give me the longer number on the front?
Victim: It’s in the bleedin’ house! Please, there’s no time for this!
Operator: And there’s no way of quickly retrieving your card? That was very absent minded of you sir, we have been privatised for some time now so we expect people to be prepared when calling. But not to worry we endeavour to offer a flexible payment service, do you have PayPal?
Victim: PayPal?! Yes, please can we do this quickly!
Operator: We always say here at Serco Fire Service that patience is the greatest virtue sir, for the patient man would never do anything absent-minded to cause a fire, which is why we find ourselves in this little pickle. Though obviously without the docility of people like yourself I wouldn’t be getting such a fine red hot bonus this year. A little fire-based pun for sir’s delight there; free of charge of course. Anyway, I digress. Please type in to your keypad your PayPal password.
(The sound of the frantic button-bashing of a phone can be heard above the crackle of a roaring flame).
Operator: Thank you please wait …
Now it says that you have typed in your password incorrectly. The system will now generate a unique and personal question to verify your identity. What service did sir last purchase pornographic material from?
Victim: What?! How do you know about that?
Operator: The system simply accesses your accounts in order to obtain a unique and personal question to verify your identity, quite simple sir. You wouldn’t want anyone charging a burning building that you yourself have not burned down to your account now would you? But fear not sir, I am contractually obliged not to share your depravity and lewd fantasies about strapping men in leather with anyone outside of the service itself.
Victim: Fine yes, I bought something from Latinos in leather, please hurry!
Operator: That is quite correct my fetishism friend. I just need to validate the transaction…
I’m terribly sorry sir, the card linked to your PayPal account does not have the necessary funds for the call-out. You do have enough for a first-response vehicle though I must admit, they have no firefighting equipment. To use the apt phrase, they are about as useful as a chocolate fire guard, if you ask me, but there seems to be a demand for them so we supply the service nonetheless.
Victim: No, don’t bleedin’ bother, the fire’s going out by itself now as the house has already burnt to the ground.
Operator: Well that outcome seems beneficial to both of us. Now before I put you through to Serco Health Services. How would you rate the quality of your call today from 0-5?