I’ve been right here, where were you?
Well, here’s a surprise: it’s another grey, drizzly overcast day. I have the heater on and am wearing Uggs, jeans, a sweatshirt and a fleece jacket while I drink moremoremore coffee.
A couple Mondays ago dawned grey, stormy and depressing and I felt the same way. I’d spent part of the night with Murph T. Dog dug head first under the blankets, crammed between me and hubs, me teetering on the edge of the bed as the poor thing shivered beside me in terror at the thunderstorm, his butt uncomfortably close to my pillow as house vibrated with every nearby CRASH of thunder. I held him tightly, partly to calm him and partly to keep from sliding off the little sliver of bed left to me. Doze off BOOOOOM doze off BOOOOOM … repeat. I finally sort of oozed out of bed and foggily tried making some coffee. Note to self: put the K-cup IN the coffee maker if you prefer coffee over a mug of hot water.
The previous Friday hubs had directed the house painters to sever what he thought was a dead DirecTV cable coming into the house and, yep, soon as he sat to watch the news it was sadly discovered the wire had been, in fact, and as you’ve already guessed: Live. I’m gonna bet you also know which of us spent 45 minutes on a Friday evening calling customer service numbers only to be told to call a different customer service number only to be told to call a different customer service ad nauseam. I did finally connect with a charming young man named Andy who was originally from South Dakota and who sounded just like my family; within a minute I was pronouncing it South DahkoatAH and yep you bettin’ all over the place. It was old home week in a customer service phone center microcosm and I suddenly desired thick black coffee in a china cup and lemon pie with a meringue top sweating slightly where the sugar had been sprinkled, served on a mismatched china dessert plate.
At 7:37 am Monday, while I was still trying to figure out why my coffee tasted like hot water, the phone rang. What. The. Hell? DirecTV, scheduled for 8am-Noon, was on their way – and actually showed up at 7:59. I don’t know what kind of business they are running there, hiring nice young men to effectively handle your service call and then sending a nice service man out – on time – to fix your cable – without telling you that he needs something he doesn’t have on his truck and he’ll be back in an hour only to return next month. They cannot continue to do business like this, it is not the American Way of Truth And Justice and Liberty For All Amen Baby Jeezus In Your Little Wooden Crib Filled With Straw Where Is The Remote. (You don’t have a remote, Baby Jesus, remember? It wasn’t invented yet.)
Meanwhile I had a morning appointment scheduled with Dr. K because who actually thought DirecTV would really show up? So now their promptness and fine customer service have caused me a problem because I’m a cynic. I do believe it is my right to remain cynical and I do not appreciate them trying to disabuse me of my hard-earned cynicism. I was forced to read Letters to the Editor twice at lunch just to restore my lack of faith in humanity. I called and – of course – Dr. K’s fine office staff promptly answered the phone and graciously re-scheduled me for noon, which, for all I know, was Dr. K’s lunch time. It would be just like them to be really nice like that. And I bet they don’t read the idiot Letters to the Editor and yell at the newsprint, either.
So two Mondays ago I had a little extra trouble with the whole brain thing. As you both know, I have a little bit of a daily fight with depression. Whenever I finally see Little Baby Jesus in His Crib His Daddy Made Him we are going to have a talk about the issue. However, and until that time, I’m stuck with this damn brain, made of cells and electonicals and neutriniums and chemicals that all function on some scientific level, leaving me to expect it to be rational which, apparently, once filtered through the physical composition of a body, it can no longer be. Created to be rational, born into irrationality. Grey rainy cold days don’t help. More caffeine does. Social media helps. People post uplifting crap about being Zen and smelling the roses and putting your best foot forward helps. They post stupid pictures and videos that make you laugh, which helps. I can’t prove it, but I have also begun to suspect there are people out there who actually post stuff – on purpose – that will make me either LOL or say dammit. Dammit.
After a bunch more grey cloudy drizzly days that week, Monday dawned last week: grey, cloudy, drizzly and miserable. This time, however, I didn’t even have internet to lift my flagging spirits because, as opposed to the DirecTV people, AT&T was desperately trying to reach new lows in customer service and doing a damn fine job of it with little or no apparent effort whatsoever. Flushed with success after the TV issue, I decided to call AT&T about the irritating and increasingly loud hum in the phone which also disconnected internet for a couple of minutes every time I answered a call. Fortunately the only people calling are debt collectors and that guy from prison in the Philippines, but, still.
I knew it was a mistake, I’d known all along not to be expecting this to be a quick fix and sure enough the guy they sent out Thursday, the Invisible Man, who never actually showed up at my house, asked me any questions or checked back after invisibly not fixing the issue: didn’t fix the issue. What Mr. Invisible Serviceman did, actually, was leave us with no connection whatsoever, as I discovered Friday morning when my internet and phone were dead. Another 45 minutes of AT&T service call hell YES YOU SORRY @#&^%&!!! PIECE OF @#&^$$$!! THAT YOUR MOTHER CREATED IN A FRYING PAN, AS I’VE SAID 87 TIMES, THAT IS MY CORRECT PHONE NUMBER, do you have trust issues??? (I’d like to point out here that at this time I was yelling at the computer that answered the phone, not a real person from India.) (I would not yell like that at a live person. I might say to them, “I’m so incredibly frustrated, here, and I’m kinda mad, but I understand it is not your personal fault.”) (Then, when I hung up, then I would definitely yell at them. YOUR MOTHER WAS A HAMSTER AND YOUR FATHER SMELT OF ELDERBERRIES! I would yell, randomly shoving my fists in the air in a slugging motion.)
Picking up the first index card in the pile, the service person read carefully, “Yes, Mrs. Upset Person, your phone line does appear to be dead.” NO SHIT, SHERLOCK!!!! I screamed silently in my head, my eyeballs bulging.
“Yes, I understand I have no service. This is why I am calling you, my new favoritest person in the world.”
Looking through their alphabetically ordered index cards, the phone answering person found the Conciliatory Reply index card and replied, reading slowly, “I am sorry you are having this problem. We here at AT&T value you as a customer and think you are probably a fine upstanding person who does not yell at people inside their mind, and we want to help you because we value you, and we are here to help you. How may I help you?”
If I continue typing the rest of the conversation I will A) have carpel tunnel syndrome B) scare the poop out of Mo again and C) have to beg the doctor for a Zanax which I don’t really have time to wait for since their office is closed on Wednesday, plus driving to the pharmacy is difficult once your head has completely exploded.
It turns out that my valued, cherished, esteemed and highly regarded relationship with AT&T was of such importance that they eventually scheduled a service call – for the internet THEY broke – for Tuesday no later than 6pm. Five days hence.
And they weren’t kidding.