wine by the color

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Part of the reason I don't blog as frequently (and yes, I realize calling three posts in five months "as frequently" is probably pushing it) is that I just don't get all that fired up about many things anymore. The Captain is perhaps the most patient person I've ever known, which seems to have rubbed off and made me calmer.

But leave it to the assclowns at Comcast to raise my ire...

I haven't been able to access OnDemand programming since it became available several years ago. I've had other problems with my cable in recent months - I suddenly lost the NFL Network just as Thursday night games started; the 40 music channels stopped working - but the lack of OnDemand is what really annoyed me. It seems like it should be simple to fix (not to mention something they should want to fix as I could then give even more money to Comcast for movie rentals and the like) but clearly it's not.

After countless phone calls with individuals who assured me they had fixed the problem (through various levels of shaky English), I finally got someone last week who said the problem was probably my cable box. So I brought it to Comcast for a replacement last Friday afternoon. While there, I asked about their DVR service. Despite the prospect of giving even more money to Comcast, it sounded good so I was given a DVR box (which looked like it had been dropped from the top of a 15-story building, but she assured me it would work just fine), and off I went.

On the way home, I picked up the crazy nephews and niece triumvirate for a sleepover. When we arrived home, we tried to set up the box, only to quickly realize it was an HD box and was not compatible with my old but still working-just-fine-not-HD television. So I called Comcast to express my displeasure with this situation and the fact that the woman at the office didn't ask if I had an HD television. The woman on that call was extremely difficult to understand but I am pretty sure she told me the box would work with my relic of a television but it was very complicated and they would need to send a technician to do it (which would not be a complimentary visit). My blood pressure was running at an unhealthy level during this whole call and I finally told her I had to hang up because I was afraid I was going to scare the kids with an outburst of irate profanity.

Saturday morning, after the kids left, I called back. I chose the "cancel service" option, which surprisingly put me on the line with someone who spoke perfect English. I explained the problem to her and expressed my desire to cancel cable. I told her I was tired of paying for things I wasn't receiving. She helpfully pointed out that "actually, you don't have to pay to have OnDemand," at which point I suggested that "ACTUALLY, if it is a service you offer and I am paying more than $100 a month for cable then I am ACTUALLY paying for it."

She then helpfully asked why I didn't just hook the box up to the television using the "Cable Out" portal. I said I would be happy to do so if such a thing existed, but it did not. After some additional questioning, most of which seemed to be questioning my ability to find the words "Cable Out" on the back of the box, she eventually put me on hold. She came back about 10 minutes later to cheerily report that we could indeed use that box with my television and the video department would help me set it up.

I was then transferred to the video department, where I had to again explain the entire situation. And that's when the woman on the line said: "I have no idea what you're talking about." So I asked to be transferred back to the "Cancel Your Damn Cable" department.

When I explained the problem yet again, that woman indicated that no, that cable box would not work with my television. I believe I snorted with laughter at this point. And the only reason I didn't cancel then is because that woman wavied the fee for the technician visit and credited me for this month of cable.

And now we'll see if this actually gets fixed Thursday evening between the hours of 5 and 7...


  • At 1/11/2011 1:55 PM, Anonymous UJ from North Country said…

    Too bad you don't have Time Warner. We have virtually zero issues. The HD box should work with a non-HD TV, ours does. Good luck with your service call. :(

  • At 1/11/2011 8:18 PM, Blogger jersey girl said…

    I'd love to have Time Warner. I even looked into Fios but it's not available in my neighborhood yet.

    They better send someone who knows what he's doing over here Thursday, or there could be real trouble.

  • At 1/13/2011 3:11 PM, Blogger SJPSandman said…

    Dude, count your blessings: Comcast blows Cablevision out of the waiter. I WISH I still had Comcast like I did when I lived in Uniojn County.
    Cablevision sucks major donkey dick, and, like you, Fios isnt available here, either. Someone suggested DirectTV -- which would be good since it would also mean we could get tyhe football package -- but I would like to retain the ability watch television when it rains.

  • At 1/16/2011 10:52 AM, Blogger jersey girl said…

    Trust me, I'm very glad I don't have CableVision. I wanted to get DirectTV - despite the trouble when there's any sort of inclement weather - but my condo association won't allow it.

    Yet another reason to move...


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