Monday, September 25, 2006


things have been pretty hectic here, and in the past week i haven't been online nearly as much as i'd like. i didn't get to check my email yesterday at all, which is pretty bad for a net addict like myself. (especially bad when you consider that my professional livelihood as a freelancer depends on regular net access.)

in the next few weeks, i will be moving out of my house, putting the house on the market, and moving in with virago (moving into her new apartment on the north side). and we've been having internet problems here.

originally, virago was going to get DSL from at&t. that was supposed to get hooked up on august 28. then it got rescheduled for later. and it kept getting moved back, for two weeks. all the while, if virago wanted to connect to the net, she was forced to use dial-up (which isn't that useful if you're a grad student who needs to download massive PDFs).

my one condition for moving in with virago was that she would need to get some sort of cable or satellite television, because not only am i hooked on numerous cable shows, but i depend on tv for my music as well—most of my samples come from tv. so as we researched comcast cable, virago got excited by their "big bundle" package, with digital cable, high-speed internet, and digital phone. she was so upset with at&t by this point that she instantly decided to dump at&t altogether and switch to comcast.

the comcast guy came out last monday and hooked it all up. everything seemed to be great. but by tuesday morning, the phone and internet were out. we scheduled an appointment for wednesday afternoon, but when i got to the apartment wednesday to wait for the guy to show up, i noticed that everything seemed to be working again, so i called to cancel the appointment. this turned out to be a huge mistake, as by evening the phone and internet were out again. so now virago didn't even have dial-up anymore. and the cable tv signal wasn't hot either: our analog channels were fuzzy, and a bunch of our digital channels were glitchy when they came in at all. something was seriously messed up.

we set up another appointment for thursday. the tech came out, looked around, and told me the line from outside needed to be replaced, and that this would be done within 48 hours. when we called to confirm (and ask whether we needed to be here when the service tech arrived), we were told it would be fixed by 8pm sunday (technically about 82 hours after our last appointment). after 8pm came and went, we were told that our appointment had been canceled for some mysterious reason. (either no reason was given or the customer service people couldn't understand the cryptic code explaining the cancelation.) my guess is that virago's new apartment is in a gated community, and the comcast guys couldn't get through the gate (and apparently also didn't have my cell number so we could let them in). but that's just a guess; we might never know why that appointment was canceled.

finally, this afternoon two comcast guys showed up. they checked the signal at the wall and it was great (so the line outside wasn't the problem), but when they checked the signal at the splitter, it was crap. so they replaced the cable that ran from the wall to the splitter and suddenly everything worked again. what happened to the cable, i can only imagine, but apparently it had gone bad.

so i've spent a good chunk of the past week here in this apartment, waiting for cable guys to come. as you can imagine, we aren't particularly happy with comcast right now. however, everything does seem to be truly fixed now, so it could be smooth sailing from here out. and i must say that, as bad as the past week has been, comcast's customer service is still better than at&t's: it only took comcast one week to fix everything, whereas at&t couldn't get anything fixed within two weeks. and while you might be on hold for a half hour if you call comcast late sunday night, at other times you might get through immediately. this will never, ever happen when you call at&t: when you call at&t, you will be on hold for a while. count on it.

now that the internet access seems to be fixed, i'll be back online more often. i still might not blog as much as i'd like (i need to catch up on the editing work i should've been doing the past few days, not to mention packing, sorting through my belongings for stuff to sell or donate to goodwill, and so on), but i'll at least be available again.

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