This Is How Bureaucracy Works

Department Bureaucrat: “Here. Fill out this form, and you will be on leave for the quarter.”
Me: “Dur, okay. You probably know how things work.”

3 months later, I place a phone call to solve a problem….

University Bureaucrat 1: “Hello? Uh, this computer thingy says you never filled out your leave form. You are discontinued.”
Me: “Um.”
University Bureaucrat 1: “Department Bureaucrat needs to change the computer thingy. Here, we will call him together on the telly-phone!”
Me: “Okay…hello. Hello? Hello?”
Department Bureaucrat: “Hello? Why are you calling me?”
Me: “Um, University Bureaucrat 1 was supposed to be on the line here to ask you why you didn’t submit the form you said you submitted.”
Department Bureaucrat: “I submitted the form. They are wrong. Their computer thingy is wrong. I submitted the form.”
Me: “Um. They said you have to change the computer thingy.”
Department Bureaucrat: “No. I cannot change the computer thingy. THEY have to change the computer thingy. You call them and say that.”
Me: “Um, but I called them, and they made me talk to y….”
Department Bureaucrat: “You call them and tell them. Maybe they can call me. I will be here for 30 seconds, then I will be gone forever.”
Me: “Um…okay?”

20 minutes on hold later….

University Bureaucrat 2: “Hello? Hello? Why are you calling me?”
Me: “Um…well….University Bureaucrat…Department Bureaucrat…phone call…..discontinued…computer thingy….”
University Bureaucrat 2: “Computer thingy says you are discontinued. What do you want?”
Me: “Um….to not be?”
University Bureaucrat 2: “Department Bureaucrat has to change computer thingy. You should call h….”
Me: “I DON’T WANNA CALL NO ONE NO MORE!”
University Bureaucrat 2: “I will get University Bureaucrat SPECIALIST to investigate. Like X-Files. Because computer thingy says you are discontinued, and only Mulder would believe that computer thingy is wrong.”
Me: “Fine.”

4 hours later….

6 hours later….

End of Bureaucratic Business Day.

Update!

12 Hours later…

Department Bureaucrat: Good news! Your issue has been resolved! I lost your leave form, so it turns out you are discontinued. Bye…
me: Um….wait?
Department Bureaucrat: What? You need something else? Okay. Fill out this other form, and maybe we can reinstate you. There is a fee.
me: Um…wait?
Department Bureaucrat: Look, I don’t know what you want. I lost the form, so you have to fill out another form and pay a fee. Okay, maybe I can talk to someone about the fee. Maybe you don’t have to pay it. Maybe. I’ll do you a favour.
me: Um…wait?
Department Bureaucrat: There is nothing else you can do! I don’t have the form, so you need to fill out this different form…
me: I HAVE THE FORM DO YOU WANT A COPY OF THE FORM I HAVE A COPY OF THE FORM IT HAS ALL THE RIGHT DATES AND SIGNATURES AND EVERYTHING DO YOU WANT A COPY WILL THAT HELP ME IN ANY WAY?
Department Bureaucrat: Maybe. Send me the form.

2 hours later…

18 thoughts on “This Is How Bureaucracy Works”

  1. LOL, that surely stinks. And well done on the Me part, it’s so You… :) Sounds very much like my talks with AT&T Uverse customer non-support. 

  2. Awesome! Best description of bureaucratic bureaucracy ever!!

    P.S. Bureaucrats suck…

  3. I feel so guilty reading this thinking about how I have probably been department bureaucrat a time or two. 

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