I’m a pretty loyal person. Well, maybe it’s just that I don’t like change…but “being loyal” sounds so much better. Case in point: I’ve been a loyal customer of Cable Company for the past six years.
We’ve had our bumps along the way. I had to edit this original post down so that it’s an acceptable word limit so I won't tell you about the huge bill mix-up that screwed me over royally (think collections and credit bureaus – but I wasn’t the right person. Whoopsies!)
When I moved into my house, Cable Company and I were happy honeymooners for six months. Until my phones suddenly stopped working. That might not seem like a big deal - most people have cell phones; heck, some people don’t even have land lines anymore. But I’ve always had a land line because I used to have a hard time hearing on cell phones. So, it was important that I had some type of communication device that I could hear on just in case there was an emergency and I needed to order Chinese take-out. I called the good ol’ 1-800 number and they scheduled a technician to come out. Unfortunately, he couldn’t figure out what the issue with the wiring was so his solution was to plug my phone into my modem and not use the phone jack. That was fine for the living room…but the jacks in my kitchen, bedroom, and basement didn’t work either. That’s okay. I’m adaptable. For Christmas last year, I got cordless phones.
A few weeks after the phone saga, the picture started freezing on the TV in my bedroom; once again, I called the friendly 1-800 people. They told me to unplug the cable box from the wall, unplug the cable cord from the back of the box, reconnect, and do a jig while I waited for it all to reload. I became an expert at that until they sent out a technician to replace the box. It wasn’t that bad. I became a really good cable girl. And improved my jig routine.
Then my cable, my phones, and my Internet started to cut out intermittently. Remember that word. There were more calls to the 1-800 people, all very nice but really unable to help except to tell me how to reset and reload my modem and/or cable box (which I could do without their assistance!) They were also kind enough to schedule technicians to come out and check things out. And boy, have I spent time waiting for technicians. Nothing ever really got solved; then again, it’s hard to solve things when technicians don't show up. That happened twice. [Again, edited for length. I won’t go into detail about the “discount” I got after those missed appointments. $50 less a month but no more HBO. I guess that’s a fair deal.]
Cue the hurricane. I didn’t have my cable, Internet, and phones for a day and half. Not a huge deal in comparison with what other people endured. By the time I got home on Monday night, everything was back to normal. Until around 8 PM when everything went out again. I might’ve used some swear words as I dialed the 1-800 number that is now on my speed dial (thank God that I have an iPhone that I can hear on now!) The first guy whom I talked to told me that I wasn’t in an outage zone and that he could fix my television issue. He must’ve heard my annoyance because all of the sudden he started telling me that I had a very nice voice. Maybe you learn that at 1-800 school. Or maybe he was trying to pick me up. Whatever. When I was transferred to a second department to fix my phone issue, I talked to a really nice guy who didn't give me any b-s lines about my voice but instead told me the first guy's "fix" wasn’t going fix anything because I had an intermittent signal. And to fix that, they needed to schedule a technician to come out.
I’ll admit – the technician showed up when he was supposed to; he was professional; he went above and beyond - fixing the main problem and fixing things that should’ve been fixed the first time (telephone jacks!) When he left, everything was working. I had television, I had Internet, I had phones. And I had the happy knowledge that even though Cable Company is a great, big, huge company, it has employees who take pride in their jobs and work hard to ensure that their loyal customers are satisfied.
But tonight, I came home from dinner and my phones weren’t working. Nothing but static. I speed-dialed 1-800-am-I-honestly-calling-again??? and talked to a lady who couldn’t do anything. Except schedule a technician to come out. Now, I’m a rather quiet person who very rarely has real outbursts of anger – moodiness, sure; angry yelling – not so much. I have to tell you – I lost it. But there’s nothing the lady can do. Except…schedule a technician to come out.
But there’s something I can do.
Dear Cable Company,
I’m sorry. I think it’s time for us to break up. Don’t call me. Oh wait, you probably can’t get through. My phones still don’t work.
A Former Loyal Customer
*I got this post down from 1,415 words to 884. It was the best I could do. Sorry it’s still so long!