“The Internet’s acting a little squirrelly,” Jon texted me yesterday afternoon.
By the time I got home, all the technology was askew. The Internet was down. So our VoIP didn’t work. And no cable to watch the baseball games. With only one tiny cell reception bar.
(AT&T – Less bars in more places. Because it’s not like I live in the heart of the Silicon Valley. Oh wait…)
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 – contorting myself into various yoga poses to obtain the single tiny cell reception bar on my phone – I called my service provider (who shall remain nameless in this post, due to their ability to shut me down).
“Did you know you can get real time outage information by visiting our website?” the hold recording taunted me. Well, no. I can’t. Since the reason I am calling is because I have no access to the Internet.
“Oh! I see there was a technician out in your area today monitoring speeds. And I’m seeing some notes on your account that you are experiencing some service leakage.”
Service leakage? I don’t even want to know…
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.
“Ma’am, are you implying we turned off your service?” 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 didn’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.)
“Yes ma’am. We have you confirmed for an appointment between 8:30 and 10.”
I was not pleased.
Guess who rolled in at 9:52. (I know. I’m as shocked as you are.)
And we commenced poking around the house looking to “isolate the problem.” No one seemed terribly interested in my suggestion to retrace yesterday’s service-speed-monitoring steps. Listen people – 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 – 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 technician’s heavy breathing.
“MESSAGE IN A BOTTTTTLLLLE” Destroy’s guitar began playing spontaneously. (I fully expect to receive a worker’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 can’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 didn’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.
“How are you this evening? Would you be willing to take a brief survey at the end of this call?” 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.