Wednesday, January 06, 2016

Another "What a Morning!"

Early this morning I was again awoken by a power outage.  I always know when there is a power outage because my white noise air filter machine cuts off.  Folks, this is the SECOND DAY IN A ROW I've been jarred out of my deep rim sleep by a local power outage.

Remember yesterday?  At around 4:12 AM , nine time the power flipped on and off.  NINE TIMES FOLKS.  

This morning the power flipped on and off then back on again then off for 40 MINUTES.  Yep, over a half and hour the power was off.  As I lay in my bed, wide awake, wondering if I'm living in a Third World country, I have to remind myself I'm actually living in Lower Slower Delaware, or "LSD" to those of you in the know.

The power finally came back on about half past 5 am only to go on and off again twice before finally coming back on permanently, or until tomorrow when they do it all over again.  I don't know what's going on. 

Another drunk or drug addled Sussex County native slamming his/her car into a utility pole?  
Or more likely, the local power company repairing switching stations (their usual explanation).  

So, I went back to sleep and (thank goodness) was able to get back into my deep rim (unconscious state of sleep) for another few hours.  I got up at 9:03 am, well rested but my eating schedule seriously disrupted for the whole day.

After breakfast I my goal was to make a call to my favorite (said with a great deal of sarcasm) monopoly Internet service ("service" being an oxymoron in this case) to ask about the $19.95 charge for a "Self install service kit" I received from them to replace my RENTED modem from them.  Folks, this has to be a new path we're traveling here.  My Internet service company is charging me for replacing their defective equipment.  Unbelievable.  You have to give Comcast props for gall.  What?  Are they taking lessons from our medical industry by charging the patient for everything from tissues to compression socks?  Honest to God, their chutzpah is breathtaking.

So I called this morning knowing full well it would be fruitless exercise in getting them to take that charge back.  

After spending ten minutes going through the usual automated menu options I finally get a real person whose voice I can hardly hear.  Now folks, you know this is on purpose.  You just know it.  Anything to discourage the customer. 

I tell "Teresa" I can hardly hear her.  She amps up the volume a teeny weeny bit.  I can still hardly hear her.  

I whine again about being able to hardly hear her.  Finally she increases the decibel volume to the level where she sounds like I'm talking to her from the house across the street.  

I tell her that I was without service for a week and then when I get the new modem/router, which I had to install myself because the service person never came which, by the way is why I rent a router so I won't have to pay for a service person to service (and I know I'm overusing the word "service" in the context of Comcast).  She says "That is the charge sir."  Uh huh.  $10 for the equipment and $9.95 for "handling and processing."  Folks, I'm the one doing the "handling and processing." 

Alright, so a strike out on this one.  I could rant and rave and threaten to take my business elsewhere but the only problem there is I have no "elsewhere" to take my business because Comcast is a monopoly in this area where I live (and thrive).

My next move is to address the fact I was without service for a week and I want credit for that service.  I was willing to let that go but since Comcast is going to charge me for sending their replacement equipment to me, I'm going to get a credit.  And I got it.  It was $18.94, almost a wash.

And that folks is how I'm staring out my day.  

Tomorrow I have a dental appointment.

Friday I get my haircut.

Saturday and Sunday I veg out and get ready for my trip to La La Land Los Angeles. 

Me and Pat with our California Friend Nadege

I'm ready for that ten day sojourn in sunny Californina, especially now with the newly frigid temperatures around here.  And I do so need a break from the trials and tribulations of just everyday living.  That's why personal holidays like this are so important to me now.  Four times a year, Pat and I get together for more adventure.  

Life is good folks.   


  1. Ron,

    That does seem strange that you would charged for installing their defective equipment yourself. I had over the course of the last year s few cases of defect equipment related to my TV/phone/Internet service by FiOs. In each case I contacted the company I was having difficulties. They diagnosed my systems remotely, told my my modem or set box or whatever had tested as defected. They then shipped me a new piece of equipment via FedEx overnight. It came with instructions for installation. The delivery always came with a prepaid return shipping label. After I installed the replacement equipment and determined it was working correctly, I put the old equipment in the box that came, slapped on the return label and dropped it off at a FedEx store. I was never charged an installation or shipping and handling charge for any of this. I'm knocking on wood that this is the service that will continue if I need it. In one case they could not determine the exact cause of the problem and they scheduled a technician to come to the house. He came either the next day or day after, did his testing and when it was determined the problem lay with their equipment, he fixed the problem. I wasn't charged for any of it. I believe the only time I was charged for anything was initial installations where a service tech had to come do it and I was always told that and what it would be upfront. Back when I had Comcast I often had problems getting anyone to come out and fix it and anytime a piece of equipment had to be exchanged, I had to take the defective or outdated piece to the Comcast Store, which isn't close, go through the whole rigamarole there then bring home the new equipment and install it myself. And Comcast was charging me more than FiOs.


    1. Lar,
      Technically they shipped me new equipment. I told the customer service representative that I was replacing defective equipment. She just responded "This is the charge for new equipment." What is really interesting is that the cost of "shipping and handling" (always a catch all for raising the profit margin) is almost as much as the actual equipment. This is how a monopoly operates. When I had Verizon, they never charged me for new replacement equipment.

  2. Look forward to a few days away from the insanity.

    1. David,
      I certainly am. No TV either!


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