Megan's Head

A place where Megan gets off her head.

Category: meg’s moan in (Page 2 of 18)

The next instalment of Standard Bank crazy

I have woken up into the 7th day of my conflict with Standard Bank in a far worse place than I was yesterday. I cannot believe this is happening to me.

A new drama unfolded yesterday (one that was partly my fault, which, ironically, is easier to swallow) that has left me with no access to my home loan account either. See, on Friday I was told that the R7213.77 stolen by Standard Bank when they randomly withdrew the money from my account and closed it, would be paid back into a new account, opened specifically for that reason. I was told that it would be done that day. And, on Friday afternoon, believing that was happening, I opened an email link (retarded, retarded, retarded) thinking that that was the real thing. So, somehow, on Friday I was also the victim of a phishing plot. Miraculously, I did not do one step in the process, so all those other crooks could do was transfer between accounts, instead of pay themselves. This they did. Which is why I had no idea how R2000 ended up in my new, totally unknown Standard Bank account set up on that day.

It took most of yesterday, and a very concerned Thulani (who was pretty responsive finally, as the only Standard Bank person who has been vaguely helpful) to get to the bottom of this plot. So, I had to cancel my card, change my pin and password, and now I can’t access either the new account set up to receive the money they took, nor the home loan account, which currently has no way of being paid into, since the debit order that paid my Standard Bank home loan ran off the account that Standard Bank closed. Yes. This is all true.

Today, the 7th day of this drama, feels pretty bleak. I cannot phone anyone because Standard Bank has a policy of not having numbers for anything except the call centre. I have sent emails to the consultant at the branch (she has not replied) and to Thulani, who also has not replied. I am beyond understanding what my next step is. And this damn production is taking all y time.


Standard Bank Hell continued

I don’t know whether to laugh or cry. I have just been online and had a look at my brand new Standard Bank account that I was forced to open so they could pay me back the R7213.77 they stole from me and they have invented the arbitrary number of R2000 and put it into this new account. I kid you not. Please join me on Twitter (@meganshead) to RT the shit out of this crooked, vile, idiotic company. Standard Blank take things to new lows.

A Timeline of Standard Bank Hell

1. Thursday afternoon I got an sms from Standard Bank saying R7220 odd had been withdrawn from my account and my balance was 0 (zero). I thought it was odd and I went online to have a look at what I was sure was a mistake sms.

2. Nope. It was true. Every last cent that was in the account was gone, and the account was closed.

3. I called the help line. I was told that I needed to go to my branch because I wasn’t fica’ed and that’s why the account had been closed. No idea why (or where) my money had gone. We got cut off.

4. I called again. This time I was told, after speaking to two separate people, that my account was closed because it was inactive (I used it last week) and/or my bond was paid up (it isn’t). I was told someone would call me back. They didn’t.

5. Yesterday morning I called again. I was told the same fica story and that I needed to go into a branch.

6. Started tweeting about my pain the night before and got my first response as I was driving to the bank.

7. My ordeal in the branch lasted from 9.35am to 11.45am. This is what happened in those two hours and ten minutes.

8. I was told my account had been irreversibly closed because my fica stuff was not up to date. The fact that I had never been called, messaged, emailed or even snail mailed about this was entirely overlooked. An interesting note is that my message box on my phone is filled with many, random and useless smses from Standard Wank, telling me I had logged on, telling me about their products, telling me about their technical difficulties. It’s not like they don’t have my number or details. Wait! Doesn’t that actually mean that I am fully up to date with my fica stuff?

9. I was told that my account had been blocked since March, but I was never informed and my account was still active and being used. It is an account that has debit orders going off for my home loan and home insurance.

10. I was instructed (coerced) to open a new account so that when they found the money and honoured the ‘request’ for a refund there was an account to put it into.

11. Then I decided to change the debit order for the insurance to my Nedbank account. I was able to do that telephonically.

12. Then the social media guy phoned me, but he couldn’t call the consultant because SHE CAN’T RECEIVE CALLS.

13. Then the story of my debit order for my Standard Bank home loan. Get this. I basically need to REDO all the paperwork and have them co-signed with Big Friendly, because the debit order was set up on the account that was closed. Yes. Standard Bank closed the account and now I have no debit order for my home loan and, guess what? It is my problem. Probably, this was the moment where I completely lost my shit.

14. Then we had to write a letter to ask for my money back. Have you flippen ever?

15. Then I left the bank with the assurance that Julia would call me the minute something happened.

16. Then I decided to call the complaint line. 5 business days to manage my complaint about the closing of the account. 8 business days to get feedback on my debit order for my home loan. I lost more shit.

17. Then I decided to call the consumer protection office. They said I needed to talk to the banking ombudsman.

18. I phoned them. The pre-recorded message said I could only lodge a complaint 20 days after lodging a complaint with the bank.

19. Then I quietly lost my shit again and went berserk on twitter again.

20. Then late yesterday afternoon I got a call from Julia at the branch. She had managed to get hold of the department that had agreed to pay me back but it would take 48 hours, but there was a long weekend coming so I would only see it in my account probably on Tuesday.

Does anyone know if this is vaguely legal? I am utterly convinced that I have been defrauded by the bank. Anyone have any good ideas about what I can do, practically, to get some satisfaction and/or revenge?

PS. When I was regaling all who would listen, before a show we were seeing last night, a friend called them Standard Blank. I thought it was less rude and more appropriate than my Standard Wank.



Theatre is my Conflict

It is so hard to explain my broken heart, with the one piece torn every time I think about the tiny audiences who decide to witness our amazing work in Song And Dance, where drumming up an audience has been harder than removing each hair off our bodies with nail bitten fingers one at a time. The other piece of heart is healthy and pumping, full of pride and joy, after opening our industrial theatre project to a delighted audience of 350 odd petrol pump attendants and cashiers. Yes, this audience was bussed in, and yes, they didn’t pay, and yes, there was a big, corporate budget for the whole snazzy roadshow, but I swear, it couldn’t be clearer to me that people do not want to PAY for theatre or make the effort to go. Or is it just the theatre that I make? Am I making theatre that people don’t want to see? Please, let me know. This piece of heart needs to be given a chance to die an honest death or to heal and call it a day.

Why we are world leaders in road deaths

This is my final, big, fat moan of the year. Yesterday I was driving home after work. I was listening to Africa Melane on 567 bemoaning the huge holiday death toll on our roads. He was saying the usual (we have heard it all a million times) about how nobody cares about their own lives and the lives of others, and how people do the most ridiculous things behind the wheel, and callers were phoning in with their 2c worth.

Anyway, I was at a red robot when I started hearing the sirens of a yet unseen emergency vehicle. The robot changed to green and I saw the red flashing lights of a fire engine weaving through the diagonal traffic, so I waited for it to go through the red. Would you believe that the complete chop in the car behind me started hooting for me to go? Yes, the knob wanted me to ignore the rules of the road and common decency and just drive, because the robot was in my favour. As I gesticulated like a berserk crazy thing he just hooted again. Finally, after the truck had gone by and I had turned, he overtook me in the left hand lane.

I was boiling. Africa and his callers were still going on and on, and I understood how deeply messed up we are on the roads. As if  by universal design I was then nearly forced off the road by an Albany bread delivery truck who didn’t think I was going fast enough, even though I was doing the speed limit.

So depressing.


Bad, dead theatre

I could feel it coming. I had been finding it harder and harder to say what I really felt about certain shows. I found myself being kinder than usual. I started feeling bad for performers. I started softening a harsh response. And then I went to see a show that I found so dismal, dreary and dead I couldn’t actually write a blog post about it at all. I had found the production completely ill considered, deadly boring, unsuccessfully designed, hideously under-interpreted, base and crass, and a waste of my (not very) precious time. I was angry when I left. I felt like bits of tatty wool were about to be pulled over audiences’ eyes. As I walked back to my car I decided that I would keep my big mouth shut on this one and simmer in my own stew of disgust.

And now I am paying for it, because then I started seeing the ‘good things’ that other people were saying about this dismal production. I thought I was going crazy. I started feeling like I was on another planet. How was this possible? Surely not? But, yes. From what I could gather, certain bloggers and critics seemed to sort-of like this show. Others were obviously co-opted into saying good things. And I started boiling in my own bitter juices. This was an injustice. People were going to go off to this show on the recommendation of others and they would be (secretly, if not publicly) horrified that this crap could be considered to be good.

So, I have made a new year’s resolution about this. I am going to say what I feel, every single time. I will end up making people cross. I will offend certain performers and piss off directors. But, honestly, I am missing the whole point of doing this if I don’t put it out there, good, bad and completely hideous.

PS. For those of you who wondered what I thought about the unmentionable show before you decided to go and see it, I promise to honour your readership better and more from now on.

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