I have bundle service from a local cable company...first letter starts with 'C' as in 'Crappy Customer Service' and rhymes with 'starter'. In the year I've been with them they have done nothing but screw up. The Phone Center people are very nice to speak with, but when it comes to doing what they say they'll do, they do something else entirely. Like give me a wrong phone number. And hook my phone up to another empty apartment in my building. The latest fiasco occurred this week when I got their ad in the mail. I could add HDTV, all of the premium movie channels AND a DVR player for $40 LESS than I'm paying now. I KNOW! It sounded like magic beans to me too, but I checked it all out and it was forrealz!
As usual, the customer service rep, Elizabeth, handled everything beautifully. She was kind, courteous and efficient. I arranged to have The Cable Guy come to my house to hook up the DVR because I am notoriously bad at all things electronic. She tried to convince me that I could do it myself, but I told her that that we should get to know each other better before she made those kind of pronouncements. [She was trying to save me a $29.99 service fee. I was trying to save myself from electrocution and the rest of my building mates from the inconvenience of having to find alternative housing through the Red Cross.] But over all it was smooth sailing. I hung up after the interaction and said to Ben, "That went a little TOO well.' Having lived with me thought the previous encounters with this company, he thought so too.
I was grateful that we were able to find a two hour window the next day for The Cable Guy to show up. The last couple of times I've needed them, I've gotten an approximate date range. He shows up on time. My new BFF Elizabeth had even managed to book a strapping, studly young lad, which I appreciated. He came in and said, "I'm here to install your additional cable outlet." Sigh. Ben gave me an 'I told you so look' and slunk off into the bedroom to hide. I explained the problem to Studly. He was actually here to install a DVR and not an extra outlet. Of course he didn't have a DVR in the truck so he made 20 minutes worth of phone calls to complain about the having been given the wrong ticket and to try and find a DVR at a local office. Finally he says that he's going to get one and will be back.
Finally he comes back lugging this huge, silver box that looks like a '67 Buick, claiming that it is an 'older model', but it has better features than the new ones. Yeah. Right. But he says it with authority so I let him hook it up. It takes 40 minutes, 400 miles worth of assorted cables and programming wizardry possibly capable of launching the Space Shuttle, but he gets it hooked up. We go over the remote. Briefly. And some of the features. Briefly. To be honest, I lost interest in Studly as soon as I got my first glimpse of High Def. Oh! Look! Pretty Colors! My eyes got a glazed, far-away look and I waved Studly out of my apartment with a distracted flick of the wrist.
After he's gone I play with it a bit. The first thing that went wrong was the fact that the mute and volume keys didn't work on my remote. Ben-again with the I told you so-slinks off. I spend the evening walking the 7 feet, all the way over to the TV to change volumes. Then I get ready to go to bed and shut everything down. I came back out for a drink of water and realized that there was a horrible noise coming from the Buick. From what I pieced together afterward, it was a clunker and had been 'reconditioned' with a fan that was run by a squirrel and a badly chewed rubber band. I unplugged it.
I went to the cable office today and explain the whole sad tale to the person behind the desk. She is stunned that Studly tried to offload the Stone Age DVR on me and trades me for a brand spanking new Ferrari model. I ask her to void the $29.99 service charge since I have to do the whole thing over myself anyway and she says..."Weeeellllll...a technician DID come to your house." What?!? I said, "Yeah but he might as well have come over for coffee for all the good it did me. Wait! Does that count as a date? Does that cost more?" I made her laugh so she cancelled the charge. Or so she says. We'll see when the bill comes. You should probably just wait to come out of hiding, Ben.
So if you hear loud cussing and/or lots of Emergency Vehicles this evening. Or if CNN reports that the Space Shuttle made an unexpected liftoff. It's just me...Molly The Cable Guy.