Dear Direct Energy: Your $10 Loan Is Due & My Rabbit Is Starving

The following is my second letter to Direct Energy’s community manager, Trish (@DirectEnergy), where I outline how it’s not very nice to steal from people. To get the whole story, you oughta start here.

Dearest Trish,

What happened to us? We used to be great: what with the tweets, the e-mails and all.  Remember a few weeks ago when I tweeted you messages angry enough to make a therapist blush? Of course you do. $966.32 was outstanding from my account with absolutely no sign of it ever being returned. I had called your service centre, waited 27 days - and nothing.  I’d been hung out to dry and forgotten like a pair of dollar store underpants.

And then, Trish, you leapt into action for me.

I can only imagine your heroics that day – dashing up the stairs, throwing open the doors and yelling “SOMEONE ON THE INTERNET IS VERY UPSET!” before leaping over desks and clotheslining an intern in a mad frenzy to find someone, anyone with the mental capacity to reverse a $966.32 erroneous payment. I imagine, Trish, that you literally grabbed CEO Chris Weston by his custom Italian suit – and as the rolls of $100 bills fell from his pockets (lunch money?) you cried, “CHRIS! WE’VE GOT TO REVERSE THIS! A MAN’S MORTGAGE PAYMENTS ARE AT STAKE!” before breaking down in a small ocean of little salty tears.

Yes Trish, I know deep inside that you’re the Bonnie to my Clyde here. I don’t doubt for a second that you stormed into the office of the financial department with a megaphone and scared a dozen extremely underpaid eastern European women half to death when you started blaring “THERE’S BEEN A HORRIBLE MISTAKE!”. I’m willing to bet you stood over them, wringing your hands nervously while they keyed in every last detail of the return that they owed me, sighing under their breaths and cursing the fact that their free loan was now being called back.

For that, Trish, I thank you.

The very next day thanks to your diligence and after waiting a mere 28 days to get it back, there it was. A return statement in my bank account. My money was home!

Well, sort of.

See, there’s one small problem. Direct Energy returned $956.32. I think if you’ll do some simple calculations you’ll find that $10 remains outstanding.

Now, I find it fairly incredible that someone would go to all the trouble of refunding my money to me “early” through an “unconventional means” like electronic transfer (my, that’s MUCH less convenient than snail-mailing me a check!) and then not pay attention to the total that they were entering. I mean, that kind of blatant negligence certainly isn’t something I would expect from the accounting department of a massive energy company, right? So I’ve chosen to give you the benefit of the doubt.

Clearly, Direct Energy has fallen on hard times and my $10 is the only thing that could keep the company afloat.

If your execs were short on gas money to fill their Porches with premium fuel injected with the tears of an albino orphan, you could have just told me. I would have completely understood and floated you the cash. But the fact is, nobody told me they were going to borrow my $10 for another three weeks and I’m not too pleased about it. I know you’re thinking to yourself,

“$10? Is this guy for real?”

Well Trish, yes I am. See, you’ll remember that I was raised by a strict accountant mother. That same Mother would stoop down to pick up pennies from behind the counters at the grocery store, so you can imagine her horror if I was to let $10 of my own money idly slip by the wayside. That’s a metric assload of pennies.

Not only that, but let me point out a few awesome things $10 would buy:

  1. Holy crap, a Sigmund Freud action figure!  I could have been psychoanalyzing GI Joes for weeks now, getting to the bottom of their sexual attractions to their own family members. Guess that’s one experience I’ll never get to have, Trish.
  2. This BullS&%! button! Useful for times like when someone tells you a check was processed and mailed on the 22nd of May and there’s no sign of it by June 11!
  3. A twirling spaghetti fork! Can you imagine the badassery that would have ensued had I taken my last date out for Italian and whipped THIS thing out? I would have been twirling that pasta like some kind of romantic cyborg. Instead, Direct Energy completely cockblocked me and I had to take her out for dollar sushi night. We both got food poisoning.
But most importantly, Trish, do you know what $10 buys? Rabbit food.

Meet Doomsday. She’s a bunny, and she lives in the Dudeplex with myself and my room mate. As the lady of the house, we find it pretty important to keep her appeased as she (like all women) gets rather cranky when she hasn’t eaten for awhile.  Well, guess what, Trish? The $10 your company has stolen from me would have bought an entire bag of Martin Mills Rabbit Food, the delicious treats we feed Doomsday.

And now, Doomsday is hungry and pissed.

She’s making all sorts of terrifying growling noises and thumping her back feet like she’s trying to put out some kind of forest fire. I can’t even pick her up without her mercilessly clawing at my arms, not to mention the disgusted looks she keeps shooting me. And you know who I have to thank? Direct Energy. Why do you guys hate rabbits so much?

The fact is that if I hadn’t bothered to make a ruckus on the internet, I’d STILL be waiting for the full $966.32. So let me be abundantly clear: I want my $10 back. I don’t care how many more interns you have to tackle to make it happen.  The guy on your customer service line was completely full of crap when he told me that they mailed a check to me on the 22nd – that check has yet to arrive. Am I supposed to believe Direct Energy employs accountants who can’t read numbers and mail room clerks who can’t figure out how to work the postal service? Is it Direct Energy’s usual policy to lie about refunds and then drag their heels for weeks and weeks? I hate to say it Trish, but at this point I’ve got to believe you’re the only competent person sitting on their payroll.

Direct Energy has lost any chance of ever being my energy service provider. At this point, I’d sooner buy a generator, a few lengths of wire and entire pet store full of hamsters and hamster wheels to run my electricity than ever have dealings with Direct Energy again.

I know you’re not to blame, Trish. I have nothing against you personally. But I’ve got a very hungry rabbit and a bank account short $10. I know it’s within your power to fix it.

All the best,





6 Responses to “Dear Direct Energy: Your $10 Loan Is Due & My Rabbit Is Starving”

  1. Ryan says:

    Joel does it again. I’m so happy Trish personally missed the mark by $10 so that we, the people of the internet, could enjoy one more letter to DE.

  2. Christiana says:

    The rabbit was a nice touch…and I don’t even take offence to the crack about women and the crankiness that results from hunger.. it’s all true. Poor poor Doomsday.

  3. Skipp says:

    You have become a very talented and spirited writer. Good luck on getting your money back.

  4. Cat says:

    Wow. My husband accidentally paid $100 to Enmax, with online banking just like you did. We no longer even have an account with them,hadn’t deleted the account number. We didn’t find out until our direct energy bill showed we had missed a payment.

    He called, and they refused to do anything about it. He went to his bank, who sent a formal request to Enmax to investigate the erroneous payment. They sent a lovely letter back refusing again to do a damn thing.

    In short, I am sympathetic to your woes, and unfortunately, switching energy companies will not protect you from this kind of thievery. Only living in a cabin with a wind farm will save you. Then they will probably build a factory upwind from your farm just to hose you.

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