Thursday, May 28, 2009

anybody have a paper clip?

Much to my dismay, our television was showing a signal error today, apparently from our satellite. Fearing the worst (that I might not get both episodes of Wife Swap recorded), I got right on the phone with Direct TV.

But there are some things you should know. First of all, when you are watching four small children and you pick up the phone to talk to anyone for any reason, all of the children immediately NEED something: a drink of juice, a band-aid, a Kleenex, a pair of pantyhose, matches…they need things.

Plus, we just cancelled our “equipment insurance” last month. It was $5 a month that I thought we could save. So now I figure about ten minutes after we cancelled it, each individual piece of equipment spontaneously combusted and now it was going to be ALL MY PROBLEM. My shackles were already up while I waited for my turn with a customer service representative.
When I finally got to talk to someone, it was a friendly woman with a slight accent. She led me through a simple 712 step process to check all the input/output/signal strength things that might have been causing the error. And the whole time, her voice was so soft and soothing. Perhaps Direct TV is her day job and her night job is hypnotherapy. I was being slowly lulled into a state of relaxation, which is an excellent technique for a customer service representative to use. I began to wonder if I could somehow “experience problems” with my receiver every night at about 10 pm and just call and ask for her.

And that idea reminded me of a small office in Mountain View, CA. I worked there for a little over a year but that was long enough to notice that the copy machine needed service an awful lot. It didn’t take a genius to figure out that the office women were purposely jamming the machine with paper clips – because the repair technician was what some might call “completely HOT.” Not that I ever engaged in such nonsense. Please, jamming a machine with something as absurd as a paper clip? I didn’t do such ridiculous things because I knew how to throw off the stapling mechanism which at least looked a little more legitimate.

Back to my Direct TV lady, she finally came to the conclusion that my receiver would need to be replaced and for some reason, it wasn’t even my fault, Hallelujah! And next time I’m suffering from insomnia, I just need to find a paper clip, jam the receiver, and pick up the phone. Aaaaaahhhh.

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