‘And so backward and forward’

One official sent her to another, and the other sent her back again to the first, and so backward and forward; until it appeared to me as if both must have been appointed for their skill in evading their duties, instead of performing them.

Bleak House by Charles Dickens
Bleak House by Charles Dickens, Collector’s Library 2006, p. 628

I feel like this is a universal experience with officialdom. I had a bout of email/phone tag last week that made me feel just like this. Although, to be fair, I was moreso getting passed off to the wrong people who actually had nothing to do with my problem. So it was a legitimate case of “not my division” for them, however frustrating it was for me.

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