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.