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11 October 2002

I joined a new collab today.  It's called "Thursday Theme" and the idea is that every Wednesday they send out a topic, you take a picture that represents that topic and post it on Thursday.  Sounds like it could be a fun idea for my Photo of the Day.  

Today's topic is "technology" and I took a not-very-artistic picture of the ultrasound machine where I spend half my life.    That wand-thingy on the right (not quite all in the picture) goes where the sun don't shine and the patient gets to look at her insides on the little computer monitor.   For all of you who have never seen an ultrasound machine before. The pink boxes contains things which they call "sheaths," but don't let the name fool you--they are condoms. The white bottle contains the equivalent of lubricant. Fun times at the ultrasound machine!

However, it is entirely appropriate that today's topic be "technology" because I have been a victim of it and am still livid.

It seemed so simple.  I've lost my AT&T Broadband bill, which needs to be paid next week, so I was going to call them and find out the total and the address where to mail it.

I checked the AT&T phone book and found that the local number is 757-2225.  Only when I called it, I got an AT&T recording saying that the number wasn't in service.

How very strange.

So I tried the Valley Yellow pages, which also listed 757-2225.   I called again.  Still not in service.  But the Valley Yellow pages had an 800 number, which I called.  The AT&T recording at the 800 number told me that they couldn't help me on that line and that I should consult my bill (which I don't have) and call the local number (which is out of order anyway).


I dialed "O" which used to be for your friendly helpful operator.  The  PacBell operator put me through to the AT&T operator.   I explained that I did NOT want to be billed for this call, but that I just wanted to reach AT&T and that the AT&T phone number was wrong and the AT&T 800 number wouldn't let me ask a question and I just wanted her, the AT&T operator to tell me how to contact AT&T.

"I'll have to charge you for that," she said, helpfully.

I spluttered a bit until she finally said "do you want to speak to the supervisor?"

"Yes!" I exclaimed.

She put me through to the AT&T supervisor.  I explained to her that I wanted to pay my AT&T bill but that I'd lost it and that the AT&T phone book gave me an AT&T number which was wrong and that the AT&T 800 number wouldn't let me talk to a real person and the AT&T operator insisted on charging me to get the AT&T office number.

"I can't give you the number without charging you," she said.

Again I spluttered.

She helpfully told me that after I was billed, I was free to protest the bill, but that the number she would give me would probably be the number in the AT&T phone book.

I gave up.

Next week they'll probably turn off my AT&T Cable, but at this point I don't care.  It's easier than trying to deal with the AT&T system.

* * * *

We're off to LA.  I'm taking the laptop with me, so I will be updating on the road. 


Quote of the Day

To me, an airplane is a great place to diet.

Wolfgang Puck

Photo of the Day

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One Year Ago
San Francisco Fats
I am not and have never been a gambler. And even if I were a person who enjoys gambling, my career would be short- lived because I'm one of the most unlucky people on the face of the planet when it comes to games of chance.

Two Years Ago
The Lady in Red
Here I am, old Cal person, a blue through and through, and I'm traveling around the Stanford campus today in my RED jacket.

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Pounds Lost:  76.6
(this figure is updated on Tuesdays)

On the Odometer

URL 671.8 + 36
Blue Angel 171.1

(Yes, I really haven't ridden either bike since last week...
it's not just that I'm forgetting to update these figures)

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Created 10/09/02