Monthly Archives: February 2009

My life – or something that crudely resembles it

Okay, okay. Yes it’s been awhile, I concur. But while I’m not one for sorry excuses, sometimes there are valid reasons. So…as Michael Weston says…

Let me tell you a story…

In mid-December I decided to move out of my very small one-bdrm apt into a much larger one-bdrm apt. It was a good move. I called the utilities companies and transferred my services – after spending endless hours on the phone listening to piped-in elevator music before reaching a live person (“live” being a relative term…why must they all sound so nasally?).

Anyway, one of those calls included my phone company. And this is where the fun begins.

Since my move-in date was officially Dec 22, I requested that my service be transferred the weekend before. While they informed me that my Internet wouldn’t be connected until Jan 5th, they agreed that my phone service would be connected by the 22nd with the flick of a switch. Life was good. Or so I thought.

As it turned out I had no service on the 22nd…or the 23rd…or the 24th. No worries though, while not connected, the service would still allow callers to leave messages which I could listen in on and return on my trusty cell phone. So…cool.

I decided to wait until the 29th to call “V” (as in vermin, voracious, vulgar). Thought after Xmas was a good idea to get things handled. I was wrong. Because it was then that the operator informed me that I had a problem with my connection. Her suggestion: go into my basement with my phone and plug it into the outlet there to see if it worked.  Or I could wait until the tech came the following Monday to connect my Internet and have him help me…at $90 an hour — or something like that. (I must confess: at this stage in the conversation my mind was filled with an ugly haze that forced me to peer into an unpleasant future – one without a landline. I didn’t like what I saw.)

I muttered something like “I’ll…just…wait…” and there were some words coming from the operator. Words like “…next Monday” and something that sounded like “schedule” and “technician” but it was all just a blur. Then she hung up and I was left seething, knowing in the core of me that the service I left in my old apt would never again be a part of my life. My heart sank.

I decided to hold out for the technician on the 5th of Jan. Having been told that he would be there “sometime on the 5th,” I was mentally prepared to wait all day for his arrival. (I use the male term here because a female would be more respectful of my time. Yeah I’m biased. Deal with it.)

So I’m waiting. And waiting. And waiting.

At about 3:30pm I decide to call “V” to inquire as to just when my guy would come. That’s when I spoke with another operator who told me that he didn’t understand why the first operator told me I had to wait for the tech to get my phone connection…and that in fact the phone was never connected. He checked the line and saw that all he needed to do was to flip a switch and get it started.

At this point I’m like, “yeah, whatever.” just wishing he’d stop trying to be a hero and get me – at the very least – a phone line. Then he told me that since the phone was just getting turned on, I needed to call technical support to schedule Internet connection, which would mean I’d have to wait at least an additional week.

To make a much longer story shorter: it didn’t work. It was painful getting thru to technical support – and when I did I muttered illegible sounds, my voice quivered horribly as I verged on a serious mental breakdown – and I quickly apologized to the tech (who, I’m sure, had NO IDEA what was going on!) and hung up. I was defeated. With nothing left I came to the ultimate conclusion that “V” had won.

I was humbled.

Then I got the bill. And the anger was resurrected. I picked up my ever-trusting cell phone and called the phone company, this time speaking with GORDY. He was nice young man, very pleasant. I related my nightmare to him, feeling as if I was finally speaking with someone who understood my plight.

And then he spoke. Now I know Gordy doesn’t have control over things – he just happened to be the one on the other end of the phone when the rage vomited out of my mouth. And without shouting and swearing, I informed Gordy that I was disconneting all services with V. Why? Because I was being billed for services I hadn’t used – and in fact – it was Gordy who JUST informed me that Internet access was not available at my new spot (although my new spot was just six houses down the street – just a stone’s throw from the Governor’s mansion)!

I explained that I really didn’t NEED a phone line fromV – that my trusty cell was quite adequate for my needs – and that the only reason I went with V in the first place was because I needed Internet access.

He listened intently, said he understood, and then told me that I’d have to be transferred to the “cancellation dept” – which I never got to because I was left on hold for an additional 15 minutes!

And here’s the best part: after all the calls, the tears, the breakdown, the cancellation with Gordy, before he transfers me, he asks if I got the solution to my problems? If he’d been helpful? And the very last thing he says before putting me thru to the cancellation department: “…and thank you for choosing Verizon!”