Chris Ambidge wrote recently to say that he had found a cache of Miss Manners columns and gorged on them, adding:
In one I read a tale of someone caught in automated-voice-recognition Hades of some airline’s “customer service” line getting very frustrated and not speaking to a live person, or getting his questions answered. Eventually in frustration he screamed “fuck you!”* [*Miss Manners did not, of course, spell it out, but it was quite clear.] into the phone — and was almost immediately connected to a supervisor, who solved his problem. He told this story to the letter-writer, who … in a frustrating loop with a different company’s phonelines tried it — and lo! it worked. Miss Manners hoped that it could be replaced by “customer service agent please”, and hoped readers would not act on the hint provided in the letter.