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Editorial


Front Page - Friday, May 8, 2015

Are We There Yet?




Jay Edwards

Hopefully, KM won’t read this.

It was decided that our cable package through one of the well-known providers was too expensive. I called them last fall to change something, and let one of their salespersons talk me into a new package I’ll just call “The Works.” It includes 240 channels, which I watch four or five of during football season and a golf tournament here and there. We also get high-speed Internet and a telephone. Well, the Internet is fast, and it rarely crashes. As for the phone, we’ve never even connected one. I don’t think I even have a land phone. If I do, it’s somewhere in a box in my attic, lying in dust next to a broken Atari or a food processor.

So, KM thought it would be a good idea if we (my nickname is “We” around our house) called Comcast (oops, I mean that well-known provider) and made some changes, i.e. “Get rid of it!”

So, last Saturday, I made the call. The first recording I got told me to listen carefully because their options have changed. Next, I was asked to press one for Spanish and two for English. This is one of those changed options. In the not two distant past, it was one for English and two for Spanish. What could this mean? Either there are now more Spanish customers, or they’re just trying to play fair in the politically correct arena. Maybe there were complaints: “How come WE never get to press the one?”

So I pressed two and got some music, which, believe it or not, was Stevie Ray Vaughn, so they got that going for them.

Finally, someone answered the phone and said something, but I had no idea what. So I hung up, wondering if I’d pressed the one key by mistake while regretting taking Latin rather than Spanish at Catholic High.

I redialed, went through the same steps, and got a lady whose English was better. I answered enough of her questions for her to determine she didn’t want to deal with me, so she sent me over to Al in sales. Al sounded like he was from one of those faraway places you don’t want to travel to right now. I hoped he was in the U.S. because he was pretty nice, but still rather hard for me to understand.

Maybe they should have a third option. “Press one for Spanish, two for English, and three if you want to speak to someone who is trying hard to learn English but who might need to repeat the class.”

So I began to tell Al my concern. But before I could get very far, he said he needed to take a look at my account. At least I think that’s what he said. Either that, or he wanted to drop seeds near a book on the mountain. I said OK.

Al said I was in the X1 plan and asked what I wanted to do. I said I didn’t want to pay $200 a month. Al countered with how great I had it. He almost had me convinced when a familiar voice in my head said, “Get rid of it.”

“Thanks anyway, Al, but I think I’ll get rid of it.”

He began talking faster, probably sensing he was losing me, and that I wasn’t even the decision maker, which was frustrating for both of us.

The faster he talked, the harder he was to understand. He either said something about how this would be the biggest mistake of my life, or something about my mother.

I finally said, “Sorry, Al,” and he put me on hold and never came back.

To be continued…

Jay Edwards is editor-in-chief of the Hamilton County Herald and an award-winning columnist. Contact him at jedwards@dailydata.com.

H

opefully, KM won’t read this.

It was decided that our cable package through one of the well-known providers was too expensive. I called them last fall to change something, and let one of their salespersons talk me into a new package I’ll just call “The Works.” It includes 240 channels, which I watch four or five of during football season and a golf tournament here and there. We also get high-speed Internet and a telephone. Well, the Internet is fast, and it rarely crashes. As for the phone, we’ve never even connected one. I don’t think I even have a land phone. If I do, it’s somewhere in a box in my attic, lying in dust next to a broken Atari or a food processor.

So, KM thought it would be a good idea if we (my nickname is “We” around our house) called Comcast (oops, I mean that well-known provider) and made some changes, i.e. “Get rid of it!”

So, last Saturday, I made the call. The first recording I got told me to listen carefully because their options have changed. Next, I was asked to press one for Spanish and two for English. This is one of those changed options. In the not two distant past, it was one for English and two for Spanish. What could this mean? Either there are now more Spanish customers, or they’re just trying to play fair in the politically correct arena. Maybe there were complaints: “How come WE never get to press the one?”

So I pressed two and got some music, which, believe it or not, was Stevie Ray Vaughn, so they got that going for them.

Finally, someone answered the phone and said something, but I had no idea what. So I hung up, wondering if I’d pressed the one key by mistake while regretting taking Latin rather than Spanish at Catholic High.

I redialed, went through the same steps, and got a lady whose English was better. I answered enough of her questions for her to determine she didn’t want to deal with me, so she sent me over to Al in sales. Al sounded like he was from one of those faraway places you don’t want to travel to right now. I hoped he was in the U.S. because he was pretty nice, but still rather hard for me to understand.

Maybe they should have a third option. “Press one for Spanish, two for English, and three if you want to speak to someone who is trying hard to learn English but who might need to repeat the class.”

So I began to tell Al my concern. But before I could get very far, he said he needed to take a look at my account. At least I think that’s what he said. Either that, or he wanted to drop seeds near a book on the mountain. I said OK.

Al said I was in the X1 plan and asked what I wanted to do. I said I didn’t want to pay $200 a month. Al countered with how great I had it. He almost had me convinced when a familiar voice in my head said, “Get rid of it.”

“Thanks anyway, Al, but I think I’ll get rid of it.”

He began talking faster, probably sensing he was losing me, and that I wasn’t even the decision maker, which was frustrating for both of us.

The faster he talked, the harder he was to understand. He either said something about how this would be the biggest mistake of my life, or something about my mother.

I finally said, “Sorry, Al,” and he put me on hold and never came back.

To be continued…

Jay Edwards is editor-in-chief of the Hamilton County Herald and an award-winning columnist. Contact him at jedwards@dailydata.com. v