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Cut Steve's Blatherings

Tuesday, June 07, 2005

Alone Again, Naturally

      K. has returned to work, and so for the first time in three weeks, I'm here and she's not.  Feels a bit odd.

      The last week at Chez Saintonge has not been the best.  K., in deference to her belief that waking someone up is just slightly less serious than major surgery, went out walking alone several days.  Thus I missed some nice time with her.  When I was up again in the wee morning hours, last Friday, her foot was hurting her so badly that the walk had to be cut short.

      In non-K. medical news, I spent an inordinate amount of time upchucking last week.  I'm begining to think my new stomach just can't handle eggs, which is what came up most often.

      And in non-medical news, our TV went out for several days.  One problem was the weather.  I much prefer satellite to cable, but the downside is that during storms, you ain't gonna be able to watch.  This last week, the weather sucked a lot.

      When rain wasn't causing me to miss the few shows I watch, Dish Network ™ was.  Based on my experience with them, I'd say you should get DirectTV, but then if I had them, I might be recommending Dish.  Still, when we eventually move, I will switch providers.

      The problem was that the satellite receiver box has a "smart card" that is supposed to be replaced periodically, for who knows what reason.  Rather than send letters or phone me, they put annoying messages on my screen.  Since I Tivo almost everything and watch later, it means I couldn't enjoy certain shows I wanted.

      Then there's the fact that, though Dish said they sent the new "smart card," I didn't get them.  I called again, and eventually got a replacement.  It didn't work, I think because they screwed up.  Finally, they sent me a new satellite box, and after hooking that up, I was able to get reception again, but it was rather frustrating.

      And when you're not getting service, there's nothing so infuriating as hearing a recording tell you what a valued customer you are, and then trying to do something, anything, to keep you from talking to people who might be able to help you (not that, in the end, they were much help).  Somewhere, there's an accountant who told them how much customer service supposedly "costs."  He didn't tell them how much customer rage costs, because he couldn't estimate that precisely.  So he left it out of his model, which amounts to making an estimate that customer annoyance has zero effect on business, a very precise estimate indeed.  Morons.

      So, maybe this week will be better.  I hope so.


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