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Delroy Lindo

"Speaking in Tongues" A Play in Three-Acts

Posted on 2007.12.18 at 10:25
Current Location: 75070
Current Music: Lustmord - Metavoid
Tags:

ACT ONE:

There was a rapping (gently rapping, rapping at my chamber door) on the door the other night near bedtime. We never get visitors that late. I peered out the peephole and was greeted with...nothing! I unlatched the door and saw a box on the step. A white truck was pulling away. My wife's maiden name was on the box.

In one fluid move the package was snatched up and placed on a bookshelf away from prying eyes the door closed and locked as I strolled back into the living room. My wife and children gazed at me until I sat, and my son asks aloud, "Who was at the door?" I stared directly at my wife and announced:

"FedX brought a B-O-X for X-mas from your mother's X."

The kids had no idea what had just happened.



ACT TWO:

The week galinda822 was here I canceled my internet service. I simply couldn't put up with the "sudden" links of SuddenLink after their many, many outages. With zero other choices, I called AT&T and ordered up the fastest DSL I could get in my area. It ain't much, but with the dry-loop option, very affordable. Static-IP, here I come. The DSL modem arrived the next day, but just like with the lack of a coaxial connection in the office, there's also no phone jack. H E L L O - Its an office - what did you think I was going to do in here? So I still need to get that tended to.

I call AT&T and once I finally get to speak to a person - seriously, you guys would not believe how these conversations go. Well, photogoot and galinda822 would. photogoot and I used to take turns watching each other perform on the phone whenever a call needed to be made:



AT&T: Good afternoon and thank you for calling AT&T may I help you?
ERIC: Yes ma'am, I'd like to request installation of a phone jack at my residence.
AT&T: Certainly sir, And your AT&T phone number?
ERIC: I don't have a home phone.
AT&T: I'm sorry sir, we are unable to install any phone jacks unless you have an AT&T number to tie it to for billing.
ERIC: Then there's a breakdown in your billing scheme. Its a dry-loop DSL line; they're not assigned numbers, yet I require a jack to run it.
AT&T Please hold.

[time passes]

AT&T: Yes sir, I'm sorry, I should've asked you more explicitly what you needed a jack for because we do install them for dry-loop customers without numbers. Do you know your dry-loop account number sir?
ERIC: No ma'am, unfortunately the individual who set up my account was unable to email me my account information.
AT&T: Let me see if I can find it. Name please?
ERIC: Eric Howton
AT&T: Ok sir, your telephone number is 000-000-0000. This is a fictious number starting with a zero assigned to your account for dry-loop DSL.
ERIC: Thank you ma'am. Is that also my account number?
AT&T: No sir, I'm going to transfer you to [some other department] who can help get that set up for you sir as they deal explicitly with the dry-loop systems and they'll give you your account number there.
ERIC: Thank you. Can you email me this information?
AT&T: No sir, we're not allowed to email anyone who doesn't have an AT&T home phone.
ERIC: Thank you.
AT&T: Please hold.

[time passes]

AT&T: AT&T May I help you?
ERIC: Yes ma'am, I'd like to request installation of a phone jack at my residence.
AT&T: May I use information based on your usage to discuss with your products from the AT&T family which may be of interest to you while I access your account? All information will be strictly confidential and not shared with any 3rd party.
ERIC: What?
AT&T: May I use information based on your usage to discuss with your products from the AT&T family which may be of interest to you while I access your account? All information will be strictly confidential and not shared with any 3rd party.
ERIC: Based on my usage?
AT&T: Yes.
ERIC: Absolutely!
AT&T: Thank you sir. May I have your phone number?
ERIC: All I have is the fictitious number they gave me which is tied to my dry-loop DSL, do you want that one?
AT&T: Yes sir because that's also your account number.
ERIC: *sigh*
ERIC: 000-000-0000.
AT&T: Thank you sir. We don't actually set up your installation here, that goes through the Internet Group. Would you like me to transfer you?
ERIC: Yes ma'am, please. Are they not AT&T?
AT&T: Correct. They are our Internet Group.
ERIC: Thank you.
AT&T: Please hold.

[time passes]

AT&T: Good afternoon and thank you for calling AT&T may I help you?
ERIC: I'd like to request installation of a phone jack at my residence.
AT&T: Certainly. Phone number please?
ERIC: 000-000-0000.
AT&T: Thank you, and is that a good number to reach you at if we get disconnected?
ERIC: No sir, its a fictitious number handed out to dry-loop DSL customers which acts as an account number.
AT&T: Please hold.

[time passes]

AT&T: What can I help you with sir?
ERIC: I'd like to request installation of a phone jack at my residence.
AT&T: Of course, just give me a moment please and we'll get you taken care of.
ERIC: Thank you.
AT&T: May I place you on hold for two minutes?
ERIC: Uh...
AT&T Thank you. Please hold

[time passes]

AT&T: Thank you for holding. Is your DSL hooked up and running sir?
ERIC: No sir, I'm trying to get a jack installed to do just that.
AT&T: Yes...sure. May I place you on hold?
AT&T: Thank you. Please hold.
ERIC: Uh...

[time passes]

AT&T: Thank you for holding sir. We're going to have to ask you to contact your phone company.
ERIC: I'm sorry, is this not...AT&T?
AT&T: Yes, it is. But we require you to contact your phone company.
ERIC: You are filling that role for me.
AT&T: Anything else I can do for you sir?
ERIC: I can't think of anything you've done yet.
AT&T: Thank you for using AT&T.

As it turns out, AT&T won't install any jack or lines unless I use them as my home carrier, and since we don't have a home phone, I can't even hire them to come out and install the jack.

Hrumph!



ACT THREE:

(11:52:33 AM) Professortom: guess what?
(11:54:49 AM) EricHowton: You don't seriously expect me to answer that do you? I mean, given the circumstances of communication via this medium you're actually expecting me to say, "What?" prior to you releasing what it is you want me to know?
(11:55:36 AM) Professortom: yes.
(11:55:47 AM) Professortom: I'll wait for you to say "what?"
...
User Professortom Blocked

I really don't have time for that.

Comments:


galinda822 at 2007-12-18 21:09 (UTC) (Link)
Gotta love those phone companies don't ya?! :)
What a pain in the arse!

Will your builder run a jack to the office for you?
I knew we should have just done it while I was there.
ehowton
ehowton at 2007-12-18 23:31 (UTC) (Link)
My builder, apparently, is an idiot as he's not wholly convinced that my home office was designed and built specifically as, "An office."

The sad part here is that while that statement may provide him some limited plausible deniability, it simultaneously also makes him look like an ass.
JaceMan
jaceman at 2007-12-18 22:04 (UTC) (Link)
Commentaries

Act 1. I'm glad your kids didn't know what had just happened.

Act 2. You're conversation went smooth and easy I would think. I've had much, much more fun than that. That being said, sometimes the phone reps themselves have inter-office communication problems.

See This Example.

Act 3. Classic and awesome! Or perhaps -- awesome and classic! Either way, it was good!
ehowton
ehowton at 2007-12-18 23:25 (UTC) (Link)
Act 1.
Too many X's.

Act 2.
EXCELLENT Example. Brilliant, really.

Act 3.
The best part was that it didn't show me as being logged off, rather just, 'invisible' to his eyes.
Tomas Gallucci
schpydurx at 2007-12-18 22:46 (UTC) (Link)
is that a good number to reach you at if we get disconnected?
Did she even have to ask that question? How stupid can she be? (unless, of course, 000-000-0000 wasn't the real number that you were given.) I mean, Jesus H. Christ, I had more legitimacy asking if photogoot programs!

Edited at 2007-12-18 10:48 pm (UTC)
ehowton
ehowton at 2007-12-18 23:12 (UTC) (Link)
000-000-0000 was not the real number I was given. It was an obfuscation for obvious reasons. The only thing which might go in your favor on this one is that both the fictitious area code and the fictitious prefix started with a "zero."
Me
photogoot at 2007-12-19 02:27 (UTC) (Link)
Reading this brought back such wonderful memories. The more things change the more they stay the same... ;-)

I believe the customer service industry in American is seriously wounded. Really sad in a service economy.

Keep fighting the good fight my friend.
ehowton
ehowton at 2007-12-19 02:44 (UTC) (Link)
Keep fighting the good fight my friend.
I don't know any other course of action.
irulan_amy at 2007-12-19 04:50 (UTC) (Link)
Wow, what a ridiculous run-around at AT&T. Pain in the ass. They should have a form online for that or at least one set department that takes care of it. So who can install the jack?

Ain't customer service grand?

And I laughed out loud at Act Three. Actually, I'm still giggling about it.

Edited at 2007-12-19 04:54 am (UTC)
ehowton
ehowton at 2007-12-19 04:57 (UTC) (Link)
I'm still giggling about Act Three as well.
CeltManX, Devlin O' Coileáin
celtmanx at 2007-12-19 05:06 (UTC) (Link)
Did you know I worked for those people for 12 years and 11 months, no wonder I was going insane!!!
ehowton
ehowton at 2007-12-19 05:09 (UTC) (Link)
The thought did cross my mind, yes.
Complete and Utter Nonsense
jesskd26 at 2007-12-19 09:15 (UTC) (Link)
Act one was the weirdest act. What was in the box? Why her maiden name? How did this guy know where you live? Hasn't it been circa 10 years?

So many questions and so little time.
ehowton
ehowton at 2007-12-19 14:32 (UTC) (Link)
The box was from my mother-in-law's ex-husband. His last name is my wife's maiden name. The confusion apparently lies as to whom I was talking. Had I announced that to the children, then yes, you would be correct and I would be borrowing that shotgun. As it was, I was talking directly to my wife, indicating her mother's ex.

I apologize for the confusion.
Heidi
snapper521 at 2007-12-22 02:39 (UTC) (Link)
*offers a hug because you've had a bad day*

I don't like big phone companies like At&T. In fact my parents refuse to work with AT&T. :-) Of course the fact that my Grandma was a telephone operators for the company that AT&T was prior to being AT&T also helps... funny how after you work somewhere or your family works somewhere you don't like to go to that company...

Blocking Tomas: Aww... :-( Poor SchpydurXDieHard... I'm sure he's just devastated... :-P

[Currently listening: Trace Adkins - My Heaven]
ehowton
ehowton at 2007-12-22 05:19 (UTC) (Link)
Nice avatar.

Understand this: If AT&T were the only telephone carrier where you parents lived, and if they wanted a phone - they would work with AT&T.

Unfortunately for me, they are the only DSL provider in my area.
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