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Before | After


After having a support call with my ISP that was like talking to the Comic Book Guy on The Simpsons, I'd finally had my last straw and was going to just go directly through CenturyLink, the DSL provider. Everyone said it would be easy peasy; instead it turned into a complete clusterfuck that resulted in me not having internet service for days. Every time I was on the phone with these assholes, I got a different person with a heavy accent (not in India, I'm not sure where they were but I never spoke to anyone who was skilled at English enough so that I could communicate with them well), who couldn't veer off their ridiculous scripts, so I had to keep explaining the same things over and over and over. And having to go through the phone blockade where you not only have to constantly punch the same buttons over and over but have to listen to how you can get blazing fast internet or handle all you support online -- when you CAN'T GET ONLINE.

It turned out they refuse to support any other modems but theirs, and I have a D-Link modem that has served me really well since the equipment I got from them initially broke down. Initially they told me it would be 72 hours till they could propagate the information for my account, and I actually yelled, in shock, "Three DAYS?" and I told them that was unacceptable, and insisted they escalate the call. Of course, then they were going to get it done by the next day (I had a book due), and that was still shitty, but I couldn't do anything about it -- I was going to be out all day on Saturday at a guest lecture at the UW, and at a bash with the Cannibals. When I finally got home last night, I had the worst of the support calls -- they kept telling me that the ticket was closed, and I finally got the information but I couldn't understand her at all, so it was horrific trying to get a password from her. I really wish they'd teach these people the military alphabet.

Of course, I had to call D-Link support to get my modem information updated. This infuriated me -- Saturday night and I'm trying to get support because CenturyLink won't support me. Yeah, I figured that'd work well. I thought I'd have to go through the pay for support option, but after a long hold and a guy I literally could not talk to (he had a really heavy accent and mumbled, which is not a good thing for a phone call), I found out I had to hang up and call a different number for waranteed modems. I was on hold for an hour and 20 minutes. Listening to the same shit over and over and over. It was unreal. Fortunately I could understand some of what she said, and she was the first person who actually seemed to understand what I was saying, and we got the modem set up and I was back online. I really don't get why I have to do this sort of thing to get my modem to work -- other than that CL want you to buy their equipment of course. It pisses me off so much.

I hate Comcast deeply, but the whole time, I was sitting there thinking, I wonder how long it would take to get Comcast out here and get a cable modem? And when I was on the call, suddenly I heard a ton of explosions, and she actually stopped and asked me if someone was shooting guns. It turned out there was some kind of private fireworks show on the beach below me, but I had no idea about it (the warning was buried in some paragraph a few weeks back that I never saw on the West Seattle Blog). It was extremely loud and incredibly close, and then seemed to inspire some asshats in my neighborhood to shoot off their leftover fireworks immediately afterward. My cats were terrified, and I was already vibrating with tension from all these horrible non-support calls, so that was really not good. I think private fireworks shows like this should be illegal, or at least, they shouldn't be allowed to do them on the beach -- it's really harmful to aquatic wildlife, and when individual citizens go out the next day to clean it up because they're concerned, that's...really shitty.

Anyway. I'm finally hooked up again, but I have to change a LOT of places where my old ISP email address is, and that's going to take forever. I mostly just want to hunker down with my borrowed copy of Winter Soldier and read that.

I was insanely grouchy (I have never sworn or yelled at support people before, but I actually did last night -- she kept saying the same bullshit from her script about their equipment vs. third party equipment, and I completely lost my rag), and I checked my email first thing when I got back online, and there was an email from [personal profile] belmanoir. I responded and was telling her about my clusterfucked evening, and she said, well, here's something that might make you feel better -- and it was a story she wrote for me!! Ed and Greg from Flashpoint!!!

To say I squeed a lot is putting it mildly. A long time ago a bunch of us in Seattle did a fannish gift exchange, and I got bel's offer of a fic. I think a lot of people dropped Flashpoint around that time, so it kind of fell by the wayside, but when she was over at my house the other night, I had FP on in the background and we were like, "They love each other sooooo much." She's also talked about writing a Thor as a salesperson at the state fair story for me, and asked me which one I would want when I ever so casually mentioned my birthday would be in five months... I was like, Don't make me choose! It's Sophie's Choice! And she found her notes and wrote it for me!

It's adorable and totally how I see Ed's inner monologue going. I absolutely love Ed Lane, and Hugh Dillon as Ed Lane, and I love Greg Parker (man, I wish I'd had Greg to talk to me during all these non-support calls, he would have helped keep me sane), and even though I'd got to a point where I wasn't totally paying attention to the show all the time, I still loved it and I miss it a lot. Because Hugh is just so perfect in that role -- I've loved him in other things, but as an actor in the TV projects he's done lately, this is where he really seemed to come alive as the character most. And he and Greg just love and trust and need each other so much -- even when they're on the outs, they're so close. (Also, Hugh looks amazing in the tech gear and cool pants) I think Belmanoir totally, perfectly captured that in this story. Go read and leave her feedback!

Will you walk with me out on the wire (2509 words) by belmanoir
Chapters: 1/1
Fandom: Flashpoint
Rating: Explicit
Warnings: No Archive Warnings Apply
Relationships: Ed Lane/Greg Parker
Characters: Ed Lane, Greg Parker

Ed and Greg are sharing a hotel room at a conference. Ed thinks Greg's been acting a little distant lately.

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Jul. 21st, 2013 09:05 pm (UTC)
What a horror show. Glad you finally got your internet back.
Jul. 23rd, 2013 02:54 am (UTC)
It's been interesting, that's for sure. I'm kind of embarrassed about yelling at people, but god, it was just so horrible.
Jul. 21st, 2013 09:07 pm (UTC)
<3333333333333 ::beams::

tech support is THE DEVIL. like it was bad enough when no one was an actual tech geek but now that no one speaks English it is hell. Whyyyyyy?
Jul. 23rd, 2013 02:53 am (UTC)
I can only imagine, if I had to give someone some important information in German or SPanish, how incredibly terrible it would be for them. THis idea that you can have people who aren't native speakers share important, complex ideas with native speakers is just insane.
Jul. 21st, 2013 09:46 pm (UTC)
and how lovely, how timely, the gift of story.
Jul. 23rd, 2013 02:52 am (UTC)
I know --it could not have come at a better time because I was so tense my muscles were spasming, and I had such a headache. THere's nothing that helps that better than some nice slash between your guys.
Jul. 21st, 2013 09:57 pm (UTC)
Argh. I'm glad you have your Internet back.

I've been thinking of switching from my current setup (DSL through CenturyLink, formerly Qwest; actual ISP is Visi.com, a local provider) to directly through CenturyLink. The price would be about the same, and the speed would approximately triple by going from copper to fiber optic connection. But then I read horror stories like this, and remember that everything is working just fine right now -- and stay put for another while. Also, I would have to change my e-mail address, which is another horror story I have no wish to encounter.
Jul. 23rd, 2013 02:57 am (UTC)
Yeah, changing the email has been really hard. I've had the drizzle.com address for 15 years. It's everywhere. Honestly if my little ISP hadn't got bought out and bought out, and the new people weren't such complete douchenozzles, I would never have done this. If your folks are good, definitely stay put because CL are morons.
Jul. 21st, 2013 11:28 pm (UTC)
Jeez Louise. Good luck with the bastards. I had so much effing trouble with CenturyLink that I finally did wind up going back to the Devil (Comcast), because unlike CL, they actually got me internet connections that work. It's been swell, though I did have the Tech Support Runaround from Hell with Comcast when the TV signals went haywire. It's a racket, I tell ya!
Jul. 23rd, 2013 03:00 am (UTC)
What was the tech support runaround? Did they have support in another country? Or was it about scheduling or sending you to another department? I'm curious because I really do want to think about this -- I'll prolly stay here for at least a little while but possibly reconsider in the near future.
Jul. 23rd, 2013 01:22 pm (UTC)
CenturyLink issues: regularly dropped Internet connections; worked with them for TWO YEARS to get it to work reliably -- three different modems (theirs), several technician in-home visits, could never resolve the problem. Was forced to switch because of working at home on Fridays and needing reliable connection.

Comcast: online chat support, obviously foreign, for recurring and lengthy dropped TV signals. Kept making me try the same things every time, even though they didn't work. Made me go to the Comcast place here to swap out the receiver. Didn't work. Had the technician out twice, but of course, trouble did not appear while he was here so decided there was no trouble. Back to online chat (over a 3-week period), always the same damn script. Once, I got irritated by the opening script line, "How are you feeling today?" (this was during my bout of pneumonia), so I replied that it was really none of their business how I was feeling, and the person instantly signed off.

Finally got the technician out a third time while the problem was occurring and he finally fixed it by climbing up the pole and taking my cable off the splitter there. I don't know how the phone help folks would be -- I always used online chat because of the pneumonia and not wanting to talk for long periods. I could still tell they were foreign (India, I'm pretty sure) even though they stuck to their idiotic and useless scripts most of the time. I kept telling them to please review my complaint history so we wouldn't have to keep going over the same ground, but they always insisted on trying the same things that didn't work before.

On the other hand, their Internet service has been absolutely trouble-free and totally reliable.

Comcast TV is more expensive than DirectTV though. Really, I just hate them all.
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Out of the past

May 2017

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