Nobody does anything, anymore. Instead we’re all about vision statements, milestones, team dynamics, prioritisation and, of course, delivery. Ironic when youÂ consider Yodel* – you only had one fucking job – Â trumpets all of these things on its website without actually delivering anything.
Except excuses, disappointment and despair. It’s an enduring mystery to whether this is a sophisticated prank concoctedÂ to enrage normally sane and balanced human beings beyondÂ the point ofÂ setting fire to the local sorting office**. Set up a website, buy a few sheds, a singleÂ knackered transit van and perform evil marketing incantations before sitting back and enjoying the show.
Or, and I’m not sold on this at all, they really are just fucking incompetent. A maxim I’ve lived by is ‘When it all goes to rat-shit, don’t confuse polymaths tweaking the controls of the universe with the basic incompetence of individuals‘ And yet, even this sound principleÂ cannot fully explain the cluster-fuck that is Yodel’s inability to deliver anything at all. Even a passive-aggressive note explaining how it’s all your fault. But more of that later.
Mixing red wine with internet browsing is always dangerous. However ordering fifty quids worth of bike parts hardly feels like a major transgression. Especially as that total breached the threshold for free delivery. One of which has actually happened. I’ve not been charged for a service I haven’t received. I think we can all take a moment to reflect the real value of that transaction.
Done? Back with me? More than the package is after failing to be delivered last Saturday despite the digital lies stalking the tracking system. Some time post non arrival a cryptic message appended the previously jaunty life-is-good tone of the narrative. ‘Short Delay, check back for details‘.
I checked back. The next day and the one after that. The website appeared to be frozen in perpetuity offering nothing other than the package was last seen some three days ago. Right then let’s engage with the much vaunted customer services. Two problems here; one engagement appears to be tiered on three levels; a)Â being ignored on twitter, b)Â being ignored on chat and c); being ignored by the entirely unstaffed automated phone system advising you’ll get more joy on tiers one and two.
Secondly, I am not alone. The Yodel Twitter stream is a relentless car crash – a wonderful fusion of Tourettes and Anger Management. Occasionally what’s laughably labelled as the customer experience team sticks their head above the parapet, only to be set upon by packs of rabid customers long divorced from any social niceties not including the words ‘WHERE THE FUCK IS MY PACKAGE YOU FUCKING THIEVES?’
Didn’t seem a lot of point piling in with the slathering masses, so instead I attempted a little humour ‘Hi, have you kidnapped my package and, if so, did I miss the ransom note?’. Ah the naivety – this was back in the days when I believed Yodel could deliver anything at all.
Five days in and we’re stillÂ packageless, suspicious ofÂ the promise that aÂ delivery type transaction might be happening any day now. To be fair, from the depot to our house is a challenging geographic environment spanning nearly twelve miles. There are rivers and hillsÂ between us, so my hope is the delivery driver/mule owner – if such a being actually exists – has packed sandwiches and a sleeping bag for the journey.
Twelve miles tho. In six days. That’s the speed of a flaming stoat. In fact to free my mind from this circular Matrix conundrum – I’m considering setting up a rival organisation to fire said marsupials from cannons pointed vaguely at a compass bearing where a recipient might be. StoatDrone(tm) cannot fail to succeed in a marketplace where Yodel areÂ still in business.
Today tho – after much pleading for Yodel to just do the one fucking thing they are paid for – the website stuttered back into life and showcased a delivery slot ‘sometime before you’re dead but probably today’. I couldn’t have been more excited having chosen this very morn to work at home. Soon, the sound of knackered truck tyre on gravel shall signal the receipt of this mythical package. I’d requestedÂ the Mayor of Hereford toÂ attend accompanied byÂ a bard to record Â the event in song for future generations.
You may be surprised – I certainly wasn’t – that the event was something of a damp squib. Except for my inflammatory language when informed that ‘no oneÂ answeredÂ theÂ door you numpty, so we left a card‘. Some issues with actual realityÂ here; we were in all day and no card was left. I wouldn’t have minded if any fucking thing at all had been delivered. Even a card. I’m not precious. A card would have lampooned my theory that Yodel are just a bunch of stoners laughing themselves fucking stupid when anyone attempts to use their service.
A card. Just a card. Â It’s not much to ask. Regardless of the fact I was watching the drive eagle eyed – allÂ buoyed up with false hope. But no, what we actually received were lies bouncing about in the echo chamber of Yodel’sÂ unmanned customer service channels.
Still they’re going to deliver it tomorrow. Whatever ‘it is’. It’s been so sodding long now, the contents of the package-that-may-be-delivered-to-my-grandchildren are a mystery to me. It’d be a nice surprise if itÂ ever did turn up. But we all know it isn’t. Maybe I’ll get a card. I’d be pathetically grateful for that.
So Yodel – who I may have mentioned once or twice because even in this remote backwater of the Internet Google Spiders roam – are to courier companies what our current government is to democracy. That’s a whole lot of spin and fuck all delivery.
Thank you for listening.
*a portmanteau of ‘Your‘ and ‘Delivery‘ apparently. Although I prefer to think of it as a desperate vocal intonation to attract the ear of what’s charitably called ‘Customer Services‘
** sorry distribution centre. A place one imagines where dusty parcels rot in forgotten vast warehouses, while zombie employees cackleÂ at customers who still believe even oneÂ of them might ever be delivered.