November 23, 2005

But this is not how my morning is supposed to start!

It's a bureaucracy day after all; the various student information systems are rolling dice to see which answer they'll give me about my student status at any given time. My financial aid file is complete (or it isn't complete) and has been processed (or hasn't been processed), my major is anthropology or it may be undeclared, and all offices have now been informed that I'm readmitted or perhaps they haven't been.

I decided to start off bright and early by calling the Financial Aid Office just now. I do not go calling Financial Aid Offices willy-nilly; no, I was responding to a message on one of the automated information systems which told me, "You have not been sent an offer letter. Please call 642-6442 for further information." I called, a receptionist answered, I summoned all my coherence and explained about the message. An irritated sigh floated through the phone.

"We do not send offer letters!" the receptionist snarled. I trembled and meekly wrote down the email address that she gave me for a financial aid counselor to whom I've already written. I frankly have no idea what she means; is it that offer letters are now online instead of on paper? I've noticed this already but I have no online offer letter either. Is it that offer letters are the forte of some other office? She certainly didn't say so. If there's nothing to be gained by calling the Financial Aid Office about an offer letter which may or may not exist, then why did some cruel database send me unarmed and unforewarned into the lair of the Surly Aid Arbiter?

That does it; I'm spending the rest of the day in my pajamas watching Batman and eating bonbons. Fuck you, Berkeleyeaucracy.

Posted by dianna at November 23, 2005 09:35 AM

my own personal daddy is a higher-up in the berkeley financial aid office. do you need help navigating the system, which is labrynthine to the point that david bowie is actually waiting for you at the center of it? send me your questions and i will get you nice coherent answers.

Posted by: didofoot at November 23, 2005 09:54 AM

Oooooo. I think I will take you up on this. Let me just figure out what my questions are and I will email you.

Posted by: Dianna at November 23, 2005 10:48 AM

Kristen, I love you, I love your dad, and I love you an additional amount for letting me use you as a messenger. Here. You see this pile? It's love. The two of you can divvy it up.

Of all the wonderfully helpful things which your dad, being in the office of financial aid, could do, I thought that perhaps he could look in some records and tell me whether some stuff had happened yet. Maybe, I thought happily, he can even tell me who I should talk to about it! I did not expect him to pick up the phone and talk someone into processing my financial aid application right then and there.

Go on, take the whole pile. It doesn't even fit in my house anymore.

Posted by: Dianna at December 14, 2005 07:32 PM

hurrah for the dad! he just gave them his about-to-retire notice too, so you were just in time.

Posted by: didofoot at December 15, 2005 10:37 PM