Saturday, September 03, 2005

Battling the Robots

Since both the DSL and the landline are still not working, I spent most of the day on the phone with Verizon. Those pricks are worse than Apple. Almost no one could help me and I was transferred to at least ten different people and cut off twice, requiring me to start all over each time. My favorite conversation, though, had to be the one when I called DSL customer service (for the second time) and I got one of those idiotic electronic voices tries to distinguish what you're saying, so you're literally talking to a robot. Remember that during the following conversation we were at least two hours into the whole mess, and the problem I was calling about was an error during the software installation.

Robot: "Welcome to Verizon DSL support. Please say the issue you need help with; for example, 'help with installation.'"
Me: "Help with installation."
Robot: "Good news! Your DSL line has been activated and your modem was shipped last week. You may now install the DSL software and begin using the internet. This is the most updated information I or an agent can tell you. If you'd like to go back to the main menu, say, 'main menu,' otherwise, you may hang up."
Me: "Um...main menu."
Robot: "Please say the issue you need help with..."
Me: "Speak to representative."
Robot: "Good news! Your DSL line has been activated..."
Me: "Ahh!! This is fucking useless!!"
Robot: "...Please remember, this conversation is being recorded."
Me: "WELL I HOPE SO! This is fucked up!"
Robot: "...Let me transfer you to an agent."

So, for future reference, if you just swear at the robot beligerantly, you'll actually get to talk to someone human. Personally, I loved the veiled threat, as if they're going to use the tape recording of me swearing at the ether against me later.

After forty-five minutes of manually installing the software, it turns out that they sent us the wrong modem, meaning it only hooks up one computer as opposed to the three we need hooked up. Not only that, but ten minutes after I hung up, the one computer that was installed no longer recognized the DSL signal. Now we have to wait for them to send us a new modem to get the problem worked out.

This, in fact, probably has to do with the fact we can't get a dial tone inside the house. The conversation about this with the robot might have been funnier, because when it asked me if was getting a dial tone and I said, "No," the robot reponded in a genuinely sad voice, "Aw, I'm sorry to hear that..."

The Verizon people made me crawl around the outside of the house looking for the "test jack." Now, I live in a row house, which means all the houses on the block are almost touching. So I didn't find one box for the test jack, I found two identical boxes next to each other attached to our neighbors house. C and I spent a good twenty minutes following the cables to figure out which one was ours, and of course, I got a dial tone - which is really really bad news, because it means it's not Verizon's problem, it's ours. They're going to send out a repair man Sunday at $91 for the first half-hour and $42 for every half-hour after that. Nice. We're hoping our landlord pays for it, but I'm starting to get sick of dealing with this stuff real fast. We have yet to be contacted by the movers, fyi.

When I become independently wealthy, which should be in just a few more years, I plan to live off the grid. If I need something fixed, I'll buy a guide to electronics and fix it myself. I'll build a launchpad and send my own mini satellites up into space for my cellular, phone, tv, and internet service. And in a few years, my solar panels will have made up for the SUV I'm renting tomorrow.

Yup, that's what I'm gonna do.

Friday, September 02, 2005

You want, what?

Tomorrow is crocheted shih tzu, Part 2. C and I rented another SUV so we can finally get the furniture needed to put this house in order. We desparately need shelving units in the kitchen and I need a wardrobe and bookcase for my room. Then we can get the last of our boxes unpacked and all the crap off the floor.

A number of my law school friends have offered to sell me their furniture for my new place. What's up with that? If you're a starving artist trying to make rent for your 10sq ft studio in Soho, then okay, that's when you sell your worldly possessions for twenty bucks here, thirty bucks there. But you're starting next month as a first year associate for $125K and you're charging me, your friend for three years, $25 for a used shelf? Seriously? You don't think that's a bit...I don't know, rude?

Before I left Columbus, I worked in a fairly large office building, so a few weeks before I moved I left a note on the receptionist's desk listing the myriad of furniture I was hunting for, since when I moved to Columbus from college I literally had nothing but a desk. I thought maybe someone would have a chair they were trying to get rid of, or something like that. The response was overwhelming. I ended up getting a house full of furniture, including this awesome breakfast bar a friend made by hand but no longer had the room for, tons of kitchen appliances (pots, pans, coffee maker, toaster, even towels), a living room chair...I mean, the list goes on and on, and not one of them would accept a dime. They were my friends and they no longer needed the things they were giving away; why would they charge me? Some of them even thanked me for taking it off their hands so they wouldn't have to have someone else haul it away or make trips out of their way to Goodwill.

Ugh, anyway. The same person who offered to sell her shelf to me is coming over to get all the boxes I used for moving. The boxes and supplies that C and I paid around $90 for two weeks ago. I just don't really get the whole charging your friends for your used things. I'd probably sell them to a stranger on craigslist, but c'mon. If it were a really expensive piece of furniture, like a nice couch, of course I'd expect my friend to charge me, but a cheap shelving unit? I'd rather just buy a new one then suffer the awkward moment of commerce between friends.

Wednesday, August 31, 2005

Slow week.

I know I haven't been writing much lately, but it's a bit like chaos around here. I still have boxes I need to unpack, especially since I need to buy a wardrobe and bookcase before I can unload the rest of it, and my desk is an absolute wreck. So my laptop has been drifting around the floor for the past few days and it's difficult for me to sit on my low-rider bed (no boxsprings!) and write anything.

The house needs a bit of work. We still don't have blinds on our bedroom windows or a toilet paper holder, but the parts are all here so C is going to do those himself instead of waiting for the landlord. I'd really like to be able to change in my room without all the neighbors watching, so that will be nice. There's also a problem with our bathroom mirror; the medicine cabinet is slightly tilted, so you have to press your body up against the wall to see yourself, and that makes blow drying my hair extremely difficult. We're either going to get another mirror for the other wall, or rip out the medicine cabinet and place a bigger mirror over the hole. Oh, and we need shelves, lots and lots of shelves, all over the place.

The major problem that has been plauging me, almost literally, is some mystery bug or bugs that eat the shit of me at night. I wake up with huge gross bites all over my legs and arms everyday. I've seen some millipedes around the house, so that's....nasty. We're going to get some Raid, and I'm sure buying some new boxsprings to get my mattress off the floor will help.

I just went through the box where I keep my letters, which was so cool. It's so nostalgic to see the stages of my life through the cards, notes, and letters people have sent me. It also made me realize I should sit down and write a few myself. I've never been very good at keeping in contact with my friends, and I think sometimes I wrongly assume that they'll always be there and so I'll just talk to them later. But that's not what letters are for, really. They make people feel loved and thought of, and my friends deserve to know that I think of them.

Anyway, updates will probably be sparse for the next week, until I start work next Wednesday. Other than that, I'll just say that there has been a lot of sex in the new house this week, and I've gotten none of it. Sigh.

Monday, August 29, 2005

Can I ask the question on everyone's mind?

Was there a Transporter 1?

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