A loop of helpful helplessness

I called someone in the US and he wasn’t at his desk; the system helpfully informed me that the guy was not available but that I could

…please leave a message – or, during business hours, press zero for assistance.

It was during business hours.

I pressed zero.

The system cheerfully told me:

Please hold! Someone will be with you shortly!

It was, technically, right. Quite shortly afterward, a nice woman picked up and I told her who I needed to talk to. She said:

All I can do is transfer you to his line, sir.

Which is exactly where I came from.

Whoever designed this flow spared no effort to  integrate humans and machines into a single loop of helpless helpfulness. Or is it helpful helplessness?…

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