Gov’t hotlines

So the Water and Sewerage Department is planning to launch a 24-hour customer hotline.

At first, this sounded like a great idea. In fact, I thought that other government entities should do the same.

Then I thought about it a little more.

The WSD hotline

Good afternoon. Thank you for calling the Water and Sewerage Department.

If you’re calling to compliment Communications and Works Minister Julian Fraser on the stellar performance of this highly effective department, press one.

If you’re not calling specifically to compliment Mr. Fraser, but would like to pay a brief tribute to him before we get started, press two.

If you stubbornly refuse to compliment Mr. Fraser, no matter: Our commitment to customer service is so great that we’re willing to work with you anyway. Press three.

Thank you.

If you’re calling because your water bill makes absolutely no sense and never has, we can’t help you: Hang up now and never call again.

If your neighbourhood smells like raw sewage, we suggest moving to one of the uninhabited sister islands. You should probably choose one without a salt pond.

If you wish to report a water shutoff, we’re absolutely shocked. The Baughers Bay desalination plant is running at full capacity, and it has been for some time. Therefore, the problem must be on your end. Please double check all your faucets and pipes. Then, if you still have no water, press two.

Thank you.

If you have a cistern, we suggest using it. If you don’t have a cistern, press one.

Thank you.

Good heavens! Don’t you think it’s time to get a cistern? This is the 21st Century, after all.

We’re glad that we were able to offer a solution to your problem. Good-bye.

The NRL hotline

A pleasant good afternoon. The Ministry of Natural Resources and Labour is happy to assist you.

If you’re calling to pre-order fresh produce from the new greenhouses, that’s great! With enough advance produce sales we might even be able to afford to complete the structures.

We suggest pre-ordering at least $10,000 worth of produce in order to get the best possible value. (Please note that the payments are non-refundable, and the timely completion of the greenhouses depends on the popularity of the pre-ordering scheme. So be sure to spread the word.)

If you’re not calling to pre-order from the greenhouses, you’re missing out on a great bargain. Besides, pre-ordering produce is a great way to ensure your personal food security for years to come. To pre-order, press one now.

If you’re calling to report a lionfish sighting in Virgin Islands waters, we recommend that you catch it and eat it. In the near future, there will be more and more lionfish here, and eating them is one way to control the population.

The dish goes particularly well with fresh produce, which can be pre-ordered by pressing one now.

If you’re calling about an egregious violation of environmental legislation, press two.

Thank you.

If the violator is related to a legislator or another powerful resident, hang up before you get yourself into some serious trouble.

If the violator is this ministry, please try to understand that a little environmental degradation is sometimes necessary to bring the territory modern conveniences like fresh produce.

To pre-order some of that fresh produce, press one now. For further inquiries, contact the Ministry of Health and Social Development.

The HSD hotline

Good afternoon. Thank you for calling the Ministry of Health and Social Development.

If you’re calling to complain about the stalled construction at the new hospital, please go outside and shout your complaints into the wind. This will have about as much effect as anything you could say to us.

If you have questions about the new health insurance scheme for public servants, please call back in about two years. By then, we might understand it ourselves.

If you’re calling about the national  health insurance plan, double that timeframe.

If you’re yet another asthmatic Pockwood Pond resident calling to wheeze questions about when the new incinerator will be online, we’re not sure. But we don’t recommend throwing out your inhaler any time soon.

Have a healthy day!

The ECM hotline

Good-to-great afternoon. Thank you for calling the Ministry of Education and Culture.

If you love drag racing, press one.

If you think drag racing could be the third, fourth and fifth pillars of the economy, press two.

If drag racing is your bag, baby, press three.

If you think drag racing is the best thing since sliced bread, press four.

If you believe in drag racing with your whole heart and soul, press five.

If you see a drag racing strip in the VI whenever you close your eyes, press six.

To speak to an operator about your passion for drag racing, stay on the line or press zero.

To hear this list of options again, press seven.

Thank you for calling to express your support of a drag racing strip in the territory. Have a nice day.