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I recently had to tell an insurance lady I was sorry. Well, I tried to let her know. I still can’t get a hold of her. She’s not answering my calls.
I can’t blame her. After I read her the riot act, she probably never wants to hear from me again.
My wife, who heard the phone conversation, told a few people that I flew off the handle.
Because I’m usually a pretty mellow dude, those she told wanted to hear all the details. My brother-in-law chuckled.
I don’t really regret what I said. It was just the way I came across. I was loud and super frustrated.
The funny thing is that my wife had been dealing with the insurance company, and she was getting absolutely nowhere. Tensions were mounting.
When the representative from the company of the guy who hit our Honda Odyssey from behind on Highway 459 near Exit 13A (Hoover) told my wife they were denying our claim, I took the phone.
It was ballistic time.
When the rant was over, my wife took the phone. Then it was her turn. Sweet little Tammy (my wife).
Anyone who knows my wife will think the following is funny: Tammy started in on the insurance lady, and she actually hung up (Is that still a term with cell phones?) on my wife.
The insurance lady’s name was Mary Ellen (not the wholesome one from the old television series, “The Waltons,” that featured John Boy). Me to Mary Ellen: “Good night, Mary Ellen” (don’t let the sun go down upon your wrath).
We can backtrack about a month ago. The following is a true story. My wife, who does have some Indian blood in her and sometimes goes by Leadfoot, was at the wheel and tells me how the left lane on 459 is one of her favorite driving locations.
Like always, we were trying to beat time. The trip home is always slower than the one there. We were traveling from Alexander City to Bessemer for a minister’s convention on a Saturday morning. Of course, Highway 280 near Birmingham is always a challenge with all the traffic and traffic lights.
You tend to get a little freedom once you get on 459. My wife took full advantage. She loves the left lane.
Anyway, not long after she told me how much she likes traveling 459, I looked up from the passenger seat and noticed traffic in front of us was coming to a halt. I quickly informed my wife before she observed it with her own eyes.
She immediately slowed down. By that time, several vehicles in front of us came to nearly a complete stop. My wife got an A-plus for braking in time and avoiding striking from behind the vehicle ahead of us.
As we were thinking she did a good job, we were suddenly jolted from behind by a passenger car being driven by Mr. Junken.
I quickly looked in the rearview mirror and observed the passenger car veering into the right lanes and about ready to flip. The car eventually made it to the roadside right side up.
We had our four kids in the back seats. They were all okay. Nobody was injured, but the other driver complained of a broken wrist. I met up with him on the road shoulder, and he assured me he had insurance.
Hoover police investigated the crash and compiled the accident report. One cop told me the other driver was at fault because he hit us from behind.
Our van sustained substantial back-end damage, but was drivable.
Then came the run-around. The guy’s insurance company obviously wasn’t in a helping spirit. We had back-to-back traveling weekends and needed a rental.
The insurance company wasn’t “accepting” in the least bit. From the get-go, they looked for a way out.
We sent in the app photos of the damage, but got no response from an adjuster. They weren’t answering our calls.
After three weeks of unanswered messages, my wife finally got a hold of Mary Ellen – who is a claim agent, but was not working our case. She told us they were denying our claim because they said the other driver claimed he did not see our brake lights and we were 20 percent at fault.
That’s when I grabbed the phone. A little while afterwards, I felt conviction about my tone on the phone. Please forgive me, Mary Ellen, for my harshness. I could’ve said what I needed to say in a different way.
Sam Kaufman pastors The Church of God at 405 13th Ave. N in Alex City. Contact him at 432 266-0154.