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
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.