Friday, June 23, 2006

The Cable Story

We’ve all purchased something at one time or another that just didn’t meet our expectations. Sometimes, the product was just plain crap. Or maybe the customer service or support left something to be desired. I have a story for you – one that many of my friends are familiar with, but one you may not have heard before. Sit back, and enjoy “The Cable Story!”

I left work early one Friday (back in the spring of 2004, to be exact), in order to meet the cable guy, who was coming to install internet cable at home - we got a great deal from
the local cable company - free installation, $9.99 a month for the first 4 months, and then $19.99 a month for 8 months. The company said the guy would be out between 2 and 5 p.m. (typical cable window, ruins part or most of the day for ya) - he actually came out at 2:30, which, if you research hard enough, is the all-time record for cable service. The cable guy assessed the situation, and since we had put up ceiling tiles in the basement, he could no longer really go through the basement to install the cable internet. Instead, he decided it would be best to install it around the house and through the office on the second floor - which was fine by me (as long as I got the high-speed cable). So, the cable guy got the ladder, and began the installation process. He wrapped the cable around the outside of the house (underneath the aluminum siding so it didn't look stupid).

Now, here is where the story took a bit of a turn. I was in the living room, watching T.V., and I hear this loud boom. Instead of going to check and see the cause of this horrible noise, I decided to ignore it and continue watching Doc Hollywood. I did this because (A) Doc Hollywood is a pretty good movie (and the naked scene was coming up), and (B) I figured that if I ignored the boom, it would go away. Unfortunately, it didn't. About 5 minutes later, the cable guy walked into the house and said, "I had a little bit of an accident." I responded, "Are you o.k.?" The reply from him was not what I had anticipated. He said, "I'm fine.” Then a dramatic pause, followed by the blood-curdling phrase “but I fell on the roof of your car." What?!?!?!??!?!?!?!?! I thought that this surely had to be a mistake, but it wasn't. Sure enough, when I walked out to my car, there was this big ass dent on the roof of my car.

The cable guy had already phoned his supervisor, and was instructed to stay there while the supervisor came out to pick him up for a drug test (Company rule, apparently). Supposedly, the supervisor also instructed the cable guy to ask me for my toilet plunger, so he could try to "suck" out the dent. My toilet plunger wasn't working great - the handle kept coming off of the rubber thingy, but the good news is that he clamped it, and now my toilet plunger is as good as new. The bad news is that the toilet plunger didn't work on the big ass dent (Worse news, I had used it the night before on a clogged toilet, and the cable guy was licking his finger to apply moisture to the plunger – I wondered if he figured out what was for dinner the night before?). The supervisor came out, picked up the cable guy, and left me with the cable van and a key
to it - instructing me that a second supervisor would come by and finish the job and assess the damage. Wouldn't it have been great if I went in the van and got myself some digital boxes and modems? I'm too much of a guilty German for that, but oh well.

So, the second supervisor eventually stops by, assesses the damage, and installs the cable. As he is surveying the previous cable guy’s work, he says something along the lines of “That guy did great work – he is one of our best workers.” I could only think to myself, “Yes, I agree whole-heartedly – I think the ass-dent on the roof of my car is one of the best pieces of work I’ve ever seen.”) He tells me to get an estimate and the cable company’s insurance company would handle it from there. The estimate, by the way was around $2,000, which was probably way more than what my car was worth.

Also, I think I've developed my clumsiness into super human powers. I can actually transfer my clumsiness through walls to other people. I could be called "Captain Clumsy," or something like that, and be a new member of the "Mystery Men" (you'll get it if you saw the movie). Anyway, I obviously wasn’t thrilled with the end result, although I was $2,000 richer, so I guess it wasn’t that bad. By the way, I’ve taken note that a car with an ass-dent in the roof is much easier to find in a mall parking lot.

Please, share any of your own disappointments, if you have any.


Ink and Stone said...

I love that story, it makes me smile.

Here's one from a McDonalds I used to work in years back:
One morning, one of the shift managers was working drive-thru. I was working on the grill. A customer came through the drive-thru and ordered a sausage, egg, and cheese biscuit without the sausage. So the shift manager, in all his bright wisdom, decided to remove a sausage patty from an already made biscuit sandwich (instead of having me make a new one) and send the guy on his way.
Now, sausage is greasy, and McD's sausage is REALLY greasy. The customer came back through the drive-thru, all livid, and started yelling at the shift manager, something like: "If I had wanted to taste the grease of the sausage, I would have taken the sausage off the sandwich myself, but I didn't WANT TO TASTE THE SAUSAGE, ASSHOLE." And with that he threw the biscuit sandwich at the manager and it pretty much exploded all over him, covering him in sausage-flavored biscuit, egg, and cheese.

Another McD's story:
A buddy of mine was working int he grill in the morning. He was making pancakes. Now the pancake maker is a cylindrical device with a lever that only releases so much batter - supposed to make the perfect pancake or whatever. My friend suddenly went running out of the McDonald's with a muted scream. Later, I come to find out that he was tripping at the time and when he made a pancake it kept growing on the grill... spreading out to cover the whole grill - he thought it was blobish and freaked.

Reverse said...

Share any of your own disappointments...Phillies teams - 1981 - 2006.

Rev. Smokin Steve said...

To me, nothing is worse than being at a wedding as a guest and seeing that the DJ sucks. Maybe it is because I take pride in what I do.

I was one of Bobby Kaelin's groomsmen, and I was at the head table standing with everyone. Where I was standing was the end of the head table, and happened to be right next to the DJ of the R&S Club. After the first dance, Bobby and Kasey come back to the table, and we stand there waiting. The DJ has his back turned to us, and is rifling through his music. I get his attention, and whisper to him "Uh, you might want to announce the toast."

He goes, "Oh yeah, you're right." Then grabs the mic and announces the toast, then gives the mic to John, the best man.

Yes, I had to tell the wedding DJ what to do and when to do it. I hated te act that I had to tell him, but if I hadn't, we would have been standing around waiting.

El Padrino said...

I hate when I order a sandwhich with no (fill in the blank) and it come with (fill in the blank) on it anyway.

Jeff said...

If you want bad service, be an English-speaking diner in Paris.

My tax money buys pretty poor results. How many months are required to fix one lane (of a 4-lane-each-direction freeway) for a half-mile, anyway?

I really hate rental car companies requiring me to charge to one credit card, when I spend a couple days of vacation tacked onto a business trip. I can't write a check to the company credit card for my personal charges until the expense report clears, and that inevitably means late fees that I'd never incur if I could just put the personal costs to my personal card.

I had a recent flight in which our plane arrived 20 min after our scheduled departure. The airline began pre-boarding before the plane was cleaned, then piled on the first-class and back-row passengers into the walkway. Then we were all returned to the terminal before actually boarding. The airline announced that we would be delayed another hour, so I set my phone alarm and got a 20-min lunch at the terminal restaurant. While out, the plane departed. The next available flight: the red-eye, with an 8-hour wait before departure. (At least the airline put me in first-class and let me spend the 8 hrs in the Executive Club suite.)

A friend recently had a 36-hr disaster flight from Baltimore to New Orleans, including circling the Houston hub for 2 hrs before being diverted, a 5+ hour mechanical delay in San Antonio (where the pilot actually bought pizza for the passengers), being bumped 6x once finally in Houston (each time having to switch terminals), spending the night in the Houston airport, being told by an airport security guard at 4 am that he couldn't sleep outside the customer service desk (how ironic!), and finally being told by the gate attendant that he was "lucky to be on this flight."

My brother flew from Thailand to China -- into a typhoon. The airport was flooded, and Chinese law forbids diverting international flights -- so they had to return to Bangkok. Thai authorities siezed their passports, and there were no airport hotels available, so he had to get a downtown hotel with no passport.

Steph said...

That is hilarious! Sorry about your car,but still, funny story!

Los said...

Yeah - it was great. I still have the ass dent - it is kind of like a battle scar.

Superstar said...

AHHH so the azz dent is the result of Great service from the Cable company. NICE!!!


Too many bad service experiences. But I will share when I worked for the airline..Baggage claim:
There I was, wathcing the flight gather thier bags as it went around on the carosel. Then I noticed a rather wealthy looking women, (She had a mink stow on and multiple diamonds on every body part) tapping her foot at the carosel. Then it stopped. I turned to my co-worker Lou and said, "get ready". She walks over, exasterbated, and says. "I seeeeee that you have lost my bags."
Um No mame., The good news is that I am sure, that, they are only delayed. Let me see your tickets and we will get right to the bottom of this (your) problem.
"Ma'am these dpo not appear to be the sky caps' tickets for your bags, is it possible that you checked in at the ticket desk or have another ticket jacket? I ask.

"HEAVY SIGH again, NO. Those are what the valet gave me when I gave him my keys, you see I was running late"

"NO", I almosted shouted. "In Seattle, you Valet parked you car?" I turned to my co-worker Lou and asked if he had heard of this NEW service. He looked her , square in the face and said, "LADY, you have a much bigger problem than we handle, I think that your car and luggage have been stolen."

She just stormed away w/ all her fur and jewlery swearing.

That is when Lou and I just started laughing so hard that... we couldn't breath.

Rev. Smokin Steve said...


A picture of the ass dent must be posted.

I have sen it many times, but the others would enjoy it.

Your assignment... post the ass-dent picture on here by the end of the week.

Los said...

I will try to get a picture of that up, Smokin'. However, the picture does it no justice - it must be seen in person.

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