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communication, culture, TMCCC

"Q as in Cucumber"

I always liked using military time and the phonetic alphabets.
Initially, probably because it sounded ‘cool’, but then later because it seemed more precise and accurate.
When I went to work for That Major Credit Card Company, I came in operating under the premise that everyone was an experienced investigator with a more-or-less common skill set.
Boy, was I wrong!
I overheard one of my female co-workers, who had been married to a cop, and around corporate security, on the telephone, spelling a name: “A like in apple, K like in kitty cat…”.  I had thought we were professionals.  It sounded like Sesame Street.
Another friend and former coworker had been a police dispatcher.  She advised me the ineptitude didn’t start at that Major Credit Card Company.
They had a trained dispatcher who spelled, “Q as in cucumber.”!
So I took it upon myself to find a number of the different phonetic alphabets, and brought them in for the bosses to share.  It didn’t help, much, because they really didn’t care.
Many of my co-workers (except, of course, the former military and police folks) just didn’t get military time.
We were all in a department meeting one time, and the big security boss (an ex-cop, himself) asked if there were any questions.  One of the women asked, “I just don’t understand military time?  How do you figure it out?  What time is it in Alabama, right now, for example? “
Some smart-ass in the back of the room (who could that have been?) yelled out: “1862!” 
No, I didn’t get fired, or even reprimanded.
In this environment, with management setting no standard, and not caring, I don’t feel we sounded professional, either to the police agencies with whom we worked, or the customers.
Oh, well.

About guffaw1952

I'm a child of the 50's. libertarian, now medically-retired. I've been a certified firearms trainer, a private investigator, and worked for a major credit card company for almost 22 years. I am a proud NRA Life Member. I am a limited-government, free-market capitalist, who believes in the U.S. Constitution and the Rule of Law.


2 thoughts on “"Q as in Cucumber"

  1. Actually, Q-Cucumber wasn't what you would calk a "trained" dispatcher (after she quoted that little gem over the radio to all the squad cars, the rest of us all grabbed something heavy and threw them at her). She was hired because she was doing one of the communications supervisors, back in the days before this Sheriff's Office had a real Human Resources Department and hiring was a crap shoot.Her fortunate end came when one day, while making the county as safe as possible, I noticed her answer a 911 call, mutter something into the receiver, put the call on hold and walk out of the Radio Room (figured maybe it was a call for the Watch Commander and she was too stupid to admit she didn't know how to transfer calls). After about a minute or two I got rather nervous and picked up on the call only to hear gun shots and screaming on the other end. This was back in the days before caller ID, so I grabbed the supervisor and he replayed the audio tape of the call…Idiot Dispatcher: "911, What's your emergency?"Citizen: "There's some guy trying to break in my door and I'm going to get my gun!!!"Idiot Dispatcher: "Hang on a minute, man. I've gotta go to the john."Click, sound of call being placed on hold before she even bothered to get an address or city.We held a going away party for her after she was fired…she wasn't invited.G-Force 10-42

    Posted by Anonymous | June 26, 2011, 7:51 am
  2. Thanks for the clarification and the touching back story! gfa

    Posted by Guffaw in AZ | June 26, 2011, 8:00 am

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