You may have tried variations like tapping "0" until someone asks you to stop. Or maybe you've tried saying "agent" or "representative." Those all work on certain systems. It's basically the same idea, except it appears cursing is just as effective as politely requesting an agent. That's nice because if you're frustrated, you can let off a little steam before you talk to a real person. (It's useful for them too, since they didn't personally create your problem or build the annoying automated menu that has you so worked up.)
Many others jumped into the conversation to express joy about the discovery and to offer other methods with which they have found success.