Wednesday, December 07, 2005

Flip the Switch

Amy & I have a colorful history with our local cable company Time Warner. This week that history just got deeper as we added to it with a funny incident.

A little background....we have our cable, internet, and phone service all through the cable company. Over the years we have called them on multiple occasions to resolve problems with reception and connectivity. The problem has always been a weak cable signal to the house because the guy who built the house split the cable 142 times. In addition to those problems, there was an incident where a UK tournament game was supposed to be on TV but was not, causing us to move a houseful of UK fans who had come to watch the game to the closest sports bar. That one led to a particularly "spirited" phone call on my part to say the least. Nevertheless, TWC isn't our favorite utility, and we are not their favorite customer.

Which brings us to yesterday when Amy & I woke up to find our internet and phone were not working. Disgusted, we called Time Warner to get them to come out to fix it, knowing that the problem was the weak signal to the house. All day there was no signal and no phone until 5:00 last evening when it came back on just as the technician was in route to the house. He called to see if it was still down. Amy told him it had just come back on, and we thought the problem was resolved. Case closed.

Until last night around 11:00pm. Again as I tried to check my email before going to bed there was no signal -- no phone either. By this time Amy & I were both very frustrated. Obviously a person relies upon the phone in this day and age, and you would think every time you pick up the receiver you should get a dial tone. So I called Time Warner and demanded someone come to the house this morning. (Of course you get the "We'll be there between 8:00 and noon" -- ugh.) In the meantime I kept thinking to myself, "What have we done differently over the past two days that could cause the phone to keep going out?"

Amy waited around this morning for them to show up. Finally around 11:30 I get a call. "Um D, we're going to be eating our words." As it turns out, the cable booster that they installed a while back to fix the weak signal problem was not getting any power. It wasn't getting any power because the light switch on the wall was turned off. The light switch was shut off because we use that switch one month a year to control the Christmas tree lights coming on and off -- the tree we just put up on Monday. So the phone and internet were fine as long as our Christmas tree lights were on (hence at 5:00 yesterday afternoon as Amy turned them on). When the lights were turned off (as they were last night at 11:00pm before I went to bed), the cable booster was also turned off thus killing our internet & phone.

So some Time Warner technician is dogging us and laughing at us with his co-workers right now. We deserve it. The way I figure it though, this makes us even for the UK/Southern Cal game being blacked out a few years ago. Next time we have a problem at the house -- no matter if it's a leaky faucet or the cat gets sick on the carpet -- I'm checking the light switches to see if that's the problem.



Ashley said...

Thanks for the good laugh! I can feel your pain. HA HA! Ask Amy about the bird flying around the inside of my house, and you will have your laugh for the day! Tonight when you go to bed, think like Motel 6 and leave the light on!!!

D. Chad said...


About that disposal?

D. Chad

gretchen said...

you're not alone. suddenly 2 years ago, my lamp and answering machine (both on the same outlet) went out. i checked the fuse in the basement -- fine, i even replaced the outlet! after a few months of having no light in this corner and having to move my answering machine i called "Scott the Electrician."

he came out, checked everything and said it looked ok. then he looked at my wall and said, "What's this switch here?"

He flicked it and --TA DA-- the lamp went on. It was an unnoticed switch.

i wrote my check for $89.00 and bawled.