â€œThe Internetâ€™s acting a little squirrelly,â€ Jon texted me yesterday afternoon.
By the time I got home, all the technology was askew. The Internet was down. So our VoIP didnâ€™t work. And no cable to watch the baseball games. With only one tiny cell reception bar.
(AT&T â€“ Less bars in more places. Because itâ€™s not like I live in the heart of the Silicon Valley. Oh waitâ€¦)
Jon was at work. The boys were asleep. I felt so alone and isolated. Someone hold me? (Yeah. I know. I have an addiction.)
Friend: There are always squirrels to carry your data packets down the lines.
Me: I think they ate the line. Hence my predicament.
Friend: Ah, so you didn’t pay your squirrel union dues. I told you that would come back to haunt you.
Me: Clearly a sad face banana tweetable moment. Let this squirrelly shakedown be a lesson to us all.
But back to reality. Standing in the center of my home office â€“ contorting myself into various yoga poses to obtain the single tiny cell reception bar on my phone â€“ I called my service provider (who shall remain nameless in this post, due to their ability to shut me down).
â€œDid you know you can get real time outage information by visiting our website?â€ the hold recording taunted me. Well, no. I canâ€™t. Since the reason I am calling is because I have no access to the Internet.
â€œOh! I see there was a technician out in your area today monitoring speeds. And Iâ€™m seeing some notes on your account that you are experiencing some service leakage.â€
Service leakage? I donâ€™t even want to knowâ€¦
I expressed extreme skepticism that a technician just happened to be frolicking about on a cable pole in my neighborhood and suddenly my service goes dark.
â€œMaâ€™am, are you implying we turned off your service?â€ No. I am directly accusing you of accidentally breaking my service. And I want it fixed.
I was promised someone would appear at my door between 7:30 and 8:30 a.m. I explicitly confirmed this timeframe three times. (This will come back into play.)
I was ready and pacing my kitchen at 7:29 a.m. this morning. I didnâ€™t really have anything else I could be doing. TECHNOLOGY WITHDRAWALS. At 8, I called to confirm my appointment. (Nothing like a little early morning yoga stretching.)
â€œYes maâ€™am. We have you confirmed for an appointment between 8:30 and 10.â€
I was not pleased.
Guess who rolled in at 9:52. (I know. Iâ€™m as shocked as you are.)
And we commenced poking around the house looking to â€œisolate the problem.â€ No one seemed terribly interested in my suggestion to retrace yesterdayâ€™s service-speed-monitoring steps. Listen people â€“ I am WELL aware of the tactic Push Buttons Until It Works or Shit Blows Up. I get it. Shit blew up. But now it needs to be fixed.
At one point, he decided he needed to move the TV to examine the splitter â€“ the break in the connection between our cable in the living room and the Internet in the office. The house was silent but for the technicianâ€™s heavy breathing.
â€œMESSAGE IN A BOTTTTTLLLLEâ€ Destroyâ€™s guitar began playing spontaneously. (I fully expect to receive a workerâ€™s comp notice as a result of the shock.)
Suddenly, with great enthusiasm, he was almost done. It seemed a bit iffy to me. But Lucky the Possessed Pony was staring him down. So I canâ€™t really blame the guy. And finally, just before noon, connectivity was declared restored and we were given the all clear to move about the cabin.
Guess what didnâ€™t work when I got home today.
Wholly enraged at the home Internet situation, I was back on the phone demanding it be fixed RIGHT. NOW.
â€œHow are you this evening? Would you be willing to take a brief survey at the end of this call?â€ I am irritated that my Internet is still broken. And I think it would be in the best interest of all parties that I *not* participate in your customer satisfaction survey. It will not go well.
PS. Dear fates, I got the hint and spent the evening working on my book thanks to the distinct lack of shiny objects. Please note I do not appreciate such heavy-handed tactics.
PPS. Jon has since figured out the latest issue and reconfigured the router. I was outside bribing the squirrels.