Oh My Stars

Oh My Stars


The Astrology Of A Customer Service Call

posted by Matthew Currie

Today: a special blog entry that everyone can enjoy, whether they’re into astrology or not. If you are a fan of astrology, read on. If not, skip ahead to the part after the video. Either way, everyone wins!

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Astrology can predict the general course of a day, but just because you’re having “good transits” on a day doesn’t necessarily mean everything is going to go your way. Case in point: today, when transiting Venus is conjunct my Jupiter, and transiting Jupiter in Leo is trine my Mercury and North Node and opposite my natal Venus.

 

Overall, this should be a good day for me. Please keep this in mind as you read on about my attempts to get Internet service at my new apartment — getting the service done on time may have been doomed to failure, but hey, I got a blog entry out of it, right? Keep reading, and do have a look at the bottom of this blog entry for my Specials on both Readings and my new Subscription Service… once I have Internet again, that is.

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I was having a good day, my heart all filled with that love ‘n light feeling that I so often get from the pure thrill of being alive. I had just moved to my new apartment, and it’s a nice place for me to be self-employed. Or rather it will be, once the Internet gets hooked up.   There has been a delay with getting my connection. The installer from my (alleged) future Internet company came by yesterday, sat in his truck outside on his phone for at least 25 minutes, and then called and claimed he would have to return tomorrow — “first thing,” he said — to do the work of connecting one of the world’s newest and most awesome (I’m told) fiber optic networks from somewhere on the street level to my apartment.

I won’t give away the name of the company involved, but if you want to do some research, its name starts with a V (as in “VERY difficult to get things done on time”) and rhymes with “Horizon” (which is a distant point one can see but can never actually reach). This particular company — again, no names! — cut an exclusive deal to provide New York City with a fiber optic network that was supposed to reach everyone by 2014, but thanks to some weasel words in the agreement, only reaches somewhere between half and three-quarters of the city, and mostly the more fashionable and high-end parts of NYC at that.

Here’s a hint as to where I live: if you are picturing the average professional blogger as living in some sort of glass-encased palace like Superman’s Fortress Of Solitude high atop the Manhattan skyline, you need to know more professional bloggers. Ask around at your nearest soup kitchen or dive bar — everyone knows us there.

Like many of you out there, I am self-employed, and my Internet connection is as vital to me as nets are to a fisherman, cutting implements to a butcher, or plausible deniability to a corporate executive or Member of Congress. So, you can imagine my frustration when yesterday the installer… whose name I didn’t get, so I will simply refer to him as “FGWSIHTOHPANGOFHAH” — that’s short for “Fat Guy Who Stayed In His Truck On His Phone And Never Got Out For Half An Hour” — showed up and left without doing anything. After calling me and directing me to go back and forth from window to window in my third-floor apartment so he could size up the layout without actually risking the stairs, FGWSIHTOHPANGOFHAH left saying that he’d be back tomorrow. “First thing!” FGWSIHTOHPANGOFHAH said.

By noon today, FGWSIHTOHPANGOFHAH had not shown up, so I called Starts With V Rhymes With Horizon to inquire as to the installer’s whereabouts. Perhaps FGWSIHTOHPANGOFHAH had succubed to the heat, or had contracted some terrible rare illness that only those who work with one of the world’s newest and most awesome (I’m told) fiber optic networks come down with. That may in fact be what happened, because even after a 47 minute call to Customer Service, Starts With V Rhymes With Horizon was completely unable to contact or locate my new friend FGWSIHTOHPANGOFHAH. I was assured though that we would be contacted as soon as Starts With V Rhymes With Horizon knew what was up, and that with luck I would have my Internet service by the end of the day. As of this writing, that seems really unlikely, but hey… I am a Love and Light kinda guy and I still believe in Santa, so maybe things will work out all right.

However, in the event you ever find yourself in a similar situation, stranded on hold with Customer Service looking for a missing installer, let me leave you with what I said to the Customer Service Rep. Feel free to quote me verbatim (or improvise based on my wording) next time you find yourself in hold looking for your own FGWSIHTOHPANGOFHAH.

“First of all, in case anyone asks, you have done an excellent job. I’ve done your job myself, for a different company. And I want you to know that anyone who calls up and blames you personally for their Internet issues clearly doesn’t get the point of how these things work. “I know that your job is subject to certain metrics, including average call length. But if your job is anything like mine used to be, I know you have a system for exempting call to take a particularly long time like this one has.

“So let me leave you with a final thought, one that will not do your job any harm, and may in fact give you another thing your company a certain sense of perspective.

“You sound young to me (but I won’t ask, because that’s a personal question). Before the dawn of the Internet age, off the top of my head, I can name a number of countries that the United States invaded and/or bombed into submission. Vietnam, Cambodia, Korea, Japan, Germany, and Italy, in reverse order. Next time you’re on a break and standing around the coffee machine with your coworkers… and I do hope your company is not a bunch of jerks who bill you for every cup of coffee, because even the slaves who built the pyramids were given free beer in order to motivate them to keep working… there is a subject I’d like you to bring up with your friends there.

“Of the countries I named (with the exception of North Korea because North Korea is an exception to everything) how many of those countries now on average get faster Internet service than the United States?

“Please don’t take my word for this. You can look it up for yourself, based on the assumption that your Internet is connected, of course. And as a follow-up: if you or any of your coworkers have highly placed friends in the White House or the Pentagon, could you please instruct them to invade and bomb New York City as quickly as possible? If they require a rationale for taking this action, please tell them that although New York City may not currently be packed to the brim with Angry Revolutionaries, but at this rate it soon will be.

“Again: I realize this is not your fault, neither is it your fault that your employer roped New York City into an exclusive fiber optic network deal with your company, which your company is now largely abandoning because 4G service is more profitable, in anticipation of a merger with yet another very large Internet provider — one whose name rhymes with Crime-Scorner. “I’m just saying that Internet infrastructure is now almost as important to the American economy as paved roads and telephone lines once were. For may of us in the modern world, Internet service are part of our means of production.

“To be honest with you, I love capitalism. I am no Marxist. However, even a broken clock is right twice a day, and Karl Marx had certain things to say about people who “control the means of production” that somewhat ring true to me… and these things have certainly been enough to spur a lot of anger and brick-throwing over the years in various places. And if there is one thing history has taught us, it is that (at least in the short term) a mob of angry peasants with torches do not always make the wisest long-term decisions for either themselves or others. Thus, I figure a quick and easy wave of Predator drones directed against the Big Apple could ultimately be good news for everyone, and would likely get me world-class Internet sooner.

True Story: There’s an Internet company that can get you a 40 mb/second connection in Baghdad!

“So: I urge you to discuss these matters, calmly and rationally, with your coworkers and/or The White House and/or The Pentagon. Because I’m guessing that the system you have in place right now works just fine for your CEO… who, by the way, made over $36 million in 2012… but for the rest of us? Not so much. “In conclusion: I do hope they aren’t billing you for your coffee. Thank you for your time… now, you get back to work. Pharaoh’s Pyramid ain’t gonna build itself!”

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  • lyone

    OMG 40 megs/second? How many camels does that cost?

  • Matthew Currie

    Toss me a wire so I can borrow some signal! :)

  • http://louiseedington.com Louise Edington

    Hahaha – I just spent over 3 hours researching crappy over priced internet in TX – only an hour outside Houston. Apparantly we are in outer Mongolia – or maybe that has better internet options. I needed to laugh about it. Thanks.

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