Customer Service: A Monologue

L. King '21


“Okay, so this is what I understood. You’re calling because you’re dissatisfied - I’m sor- ry, yes, ‘outraged’- with the results of the DNA testing. And this dissatisfac- outrage, this outrage- is because your breeder told you that Princess Pickle- wha- oh, yes, I’m sorry, Princess Pea- yes, ma’am, I was listening while you were talking- this outrage is because your breeder told you that Princess Pea was a purebred pomeranian, and the results of our DNA test said she’s actually only 75% pomer- anian, and also 15% chow chow and 10% chihuahua. And now you’re afraid that people will find out that you own a mixed-breed dog. And you’re afraid that this will get Princess Pea kicked out of her obedience school. And you’re also afraid that Princess Pea is going to have a – yes, thank you, an identity crisis. Is that right?


“Ma’am, I’m very sorry, but I can assure you our equipment and methods are well-tested and accurate. Our scientists work very carefully to- Ma’am, please do not moan into the receiver, it’s quite unsettling. Thank you. Our sci- entists work very carefully to give our customers a true and detailed profile of their animal. We are responsible only for producing accurate results, not for any implications those results may have on your life or the life of your animal. I can also assure you - although I’m quite stunned that I have to - that Princess Pea has no idea that anything has changed, or that the DNA test even happened, so she will not be experi- encing any sort of ‘identity crisis,’ as you are so pathologically afraid of.


“Yes, Ma’am, I am absolutely certain that Princess Pea will not suffer psychologically.


“Yes, I understand that your cousin struggled when she found out she was adopted, but she is a human, and Prin- cess Pea is a dog who took a DNA test. She will not have to go to therapy – is there even dog therapy? Oh, there is? Oh, Princess Pea has been before. Oh, good. You know what? Honestly, she might have to go back. She might really take this news hard. You might even have to take off work to stay home with her. She might even start wondering if she’s even a dog at all. Who knows - she might start purring and looking around the house for an empty shoe box to go to the bathroom in.


“Ma’am?


“Oh, I’m sorry, I didn’t hear anything for a minute, so I thought the call dropped. You- I’m sorry, did you say you were just hyperventilating? Are you okay? Ma’am, you really need to take this up with the breeder. And probably a psy- chologist. Ma’am?”

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Brown University, Providence, RI

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