Sunday, January 15, 2006

Tech, As In Pyrotechnics


You have encountered a system error.
Your computer has requested "/config/login"
from host Login does
not exist. Please call Comcast for asistance.

What the hell? That is the sight that greeted me on my screen when I attempted to log in on my computer this afternoon. While I was trying to absorb just what this message was trying to tell me, an error message popped up and over-lapped the previous message.
The Internet Explorer has detected a security error and is shutting down.
After restarting my computer, for laughs, I tried accessing the internet through my little-used AOL account. No problem. Let me correct that, there was the normal agonizing "speed" of getting connected to AOL.
I was able to access my Yahoo home page and could have set about indulging in my normal blogging routine. There was still the problem of my Internet Explore, though. I do not like the option of only having the AOL option. There are too many pop-ups, in spite of the AOL supplied pop-up blocker. Having survived the early dial-up days via AOL, I was a hungry convert to DSL and eventually high-speed connections.
....So I disconnected gladly from AOL, happy to hear that annoying "Goodbye." Since it was a Saturday, and I was in no rush, I chose to deal with that dreaded call to Comcast for "tech assistance."
My wife loves to make these kinds of calls. I like for her to make the calls because she has less constraint than I. She decided to take the bull by the horns because our other computer, the one she uses, was working okay. There were no Explorer problems. I sometimes feel sorry for those Tech Service people when she calls them. I reiterate, sometimes.
After sitting through the obligatory recorded music which she said sounded like Zamfir Does Snoop Dog, she began talking to Sahib who said he was born in Ceylon.
...."I don't care if you were born in a beauty salon. Can you help me with a security problem?"
...."Of course. Just what is the nature of the problem?"
....She then read to Sahib the messages that had appeared on the screen earlier, and had reappeared again when she attempted to make a connection.
...."Oh, I cannot help you with that problem, madam. You must contact the accounting department."
...." Accounting? What does accounting have to do with getting connected to the Internet? Is that answer number one on your "What to tell the customers list?"
...."Oh no, madam. It is way down on the list, number sixteen in fact. The problem you are having is because your bill has not been paid."
....I had been listening to the whole conversation because she had turned on the speaker phone. I was there in a flash with the recent bill and check stub.
....I was beginning to feel a foreboding for not only Sahib, but for his first born also.
...."I am accessing the billing statements now," Sahib said. "Just as I suspected, your bill ..." There was a pregnant pause and we looked at each other with eyebrows raised. "I don't understand, the records show your bill has been paid in full and your payment was ten days before it was due."
...."So, we are being penalized for paying early?" My wife was in her element, she had him by the pee-nuts.
...."I don't know how this could happen? I do not understand this at all," Sahib seemed to be in near tears.
....It is here that I would have cut Sahib some slack, but as for my wife the scent of blood was in the air. She was going for the jugular! I think that she subscribes to the theory that a wounded techie is a dangerous techie.
...."I suppose you are now going to tell me that we have to wait until business hours on Monday? Then you are going to tell me I have to speak to somebody in accounting."
...."Well, that is the way we operate here. I am very good at my job, madam."
...."Would you stop calling me madam!"
...."Uh ... Yes, mad ... Miss."
...."Do you like your job? Do you want to have it on Monday?"
...."Of course I want to keep my job!"
...."Not if I don't get this problem fixed ... Now!"
....There was silence on the line for quite a few minutes. At first we thought he might have hung up on us, but we could hear voices in the background.
....Another voice came across the speaker, "I see what the problem is. Can I ask you to disconnect your modem from the computer, wait 15 seconds and reconnect it, please?"
....After directing us to open Internet Options, he led us through a couple of click this and open that actions before finally asking us to shut down and restart the computer. We were then asked to attempt to make the Internet connection through the Explorer again. It was off and running!
In the end, it turned out that accounting had neglected to post our payment to the account files. An automated program seeks out overdue accounts and disables their log-in commands. We were informed that Sahib was new, but competent. He was not authorized to override accounting entries.
My wife walked away, triumphant. She always says they should firebomb those techs and their desks. I shake my head when she says that and utter, "That's Techs, as in Pyrotechnics, eh?"
I sat down and once again started my Saturday blogging routines. After all of those distractions, I found myself without anything of interest to post. So if I am unable to resurrect any material, I guess I'll have to consider not posting at all. Don't you just hate staring at a blank screen?
No. 502


Peter said...

I don't have a big problem with outsourcing, I have a problem, but not a BIG one, if only they would learn to speak English or perhaps Australian/American, something we could understand.

jules said...

Who needs a pit bull with a wife like yours. I hope you treat her well!

OldHorsetailSnake said...

Wow, Hale, you got a real Tiger there. Nice coup on her part.

FnQueen said...

Love the way your wife handled that situation! LOL She sounds about like me. My comment to these people is "If you can't fix it get me someone who can!" BTW, love your blog! I'll be coming to visit often.