Amuse Me

There is NO State Department…

I needed information for a client regarding export sanctions against a country. The logical place to start was the US Department of State, often referred to as the “State Department.” You have heard of the State Department, right? You haven’t been living in a cave for the past six months, have you? Well, obviously the operators at information have been.

Me – Calling Information (1411): I need the number for the Houston Office of the State Department.
Operator: The Houston Office of what?
Me: The US State Department. I think they have an office in Houston.
Operator: So it’s a Federal Agency?
Me: (Amused. Yes, that’s what the US means…) Yes, it is. But I think they have an office in Houston.
Operator: I need to pass you to my Assistance Supervisor.

Operator 2: Can I help you?
Me: Yes, I need the phone number for the Houston Office of the U.S. Department of State.
Operator 2: A federal office?
Me: Yes, the location in Houston.
Operator 2: Ma’am, I have several listings for different departments, but there isn’t a Department of State. I can give you a general number though.

Does she know something I don’t know? I mean, it’s THE State Department. It’s one of those key departments. Like the Treasury. You have to have heard of them. I still can’t believe Information told me that they don’t exist.

When I talked to the State Department, after finding their phone number on the website and calling them directly, they were amused to find out that they do not exist. They assured me that they do, in fact, exist and quickly gave me the information I needed… a happy ending to my wild goose chase!

By Christine

Christine is an Avenger of Sexiness. Her Superpower is helping Hot Mamas grow their Confidence by rediscovering their Beauty. She lives in the Heights in Houston, Texas, works as a boudoir photographer, and writes about running a Business of Awesome. In her spare time, she loves to knit, especially when she travels. She & her husband Mike have a food blog at Spoon & Knife.

13 replies on “There is NO State Department…”

So the State department has become spooks, too, huh? 🙂 They don’t *really* exist – it’s just a front for a top-secret government organization that tracks the activities of all nefarious Americans. Oh wait, that’s just the Dept. of Homeland Security. Surgeon Specific warning: Delete this comment or face the wrath of Carnivore! 😉

silly operators probably got confused with the whole “state” and “federal” thing. “wait…if it’s can it be a state department?” 🙂
but if they are a spook org now and they then admitted to you that they exist…I’d look out for black helicopters and such if I were you

I would have thought a smart paralegal such as yourself would have started with the web and bypassed the whole 411 thing altogether.

Oh my goodness! TJ! How did I overlook that! I mean … doh! The other Texans probably couldn’t figure that out … it’s only because I’m a Yankee transplant that I knew that there really IS a State Department!

I used to have the same problem all the time when I called INS or DOS offices. Go to the web site, or use your back channel lawyer connections to get the right number. 555-1212 is useless.

I live in Atlanta, Ga. I needed to call CNN to confirm a studio tour so i called information. The operator kept asking what type of business CNN was. After 10 questions in reference to the type of business it was he asked what CNN stood for and then connected me to C&N repair shop.

There is NO State Department…
Big Pink Cookie: “The logical place to start was the US Department of
State, often referred to as the “State Department.” You have heard of
the State Department, right.”

Schrödinger’s cat
I was making the rounds and commenting on state-based systems over at Big Pink Cookie when I recollected “Schrödinger’s cat,” which is an observational quandry I’ve always loved. The updated Wikipedia entry for Schrödinger’s cat contains some wonderful…

Schrödinger’s Blamblog
<joe pesci voice> Okay okay okay. </joe pesci voice> Early this morning I was cruising blamblog and had a state-based moment of paranoia. Having left a late night comment, while I was sipping my early morning caffeine I thought I’d…

Comments are closed.