Boxed In

Every time my Dearly Beloved sees that I’m writing a blog post, he asks bluntly, “Is this one going to make me out to be a dumbass?”

Dumbassness is in the eye of the beholder on this one.  You decide.

Our cable/internet provider periodically announces big doings to improve service, blah, blah, blah.   Although hope springs eternal, we haven’t as yet found that to be the case.  In fact, the last time our Atlanta grandkids were here and their parents allowed “screen time,”  forty toes lined up across the foot of the bed in the middle bedroom because that’s the only room that has a consistent internet connection.

The company’s best option for providing us with dependable service might be to buy us a king-sized bed for that room.

During the times we’ve moved around the country, I discovered that it was simpler to  register utilities in my name instead of his.  Back then, when I’d report an outage,  the customer service people insisted that only the Mister could to that, since the account was in his name.  Pshaw!  The damn service had gone out; I wanted service, not secret nuclear codes.

Once I put the accounts in my name, reporting problems became easier.  I had only to tell them my “social” (grrrrr!) to prove my true identity.   Of course, it’s simpler now because usually, customer service is a computer.

What I’m getting around to is that I can’t send them an e-mail about a problem, the cable company sends out a lot of e-mails to me these days.  However, once DB retired, I decided that he could now be the cable communicator.  I forward the e-mails to him for handling.  Like his predecessor, he ignores them.

In the spring, he eventually read one that said we needed to order a  doohickey for any TV that didn’t already have an ugly black cable box.   We have a small TV in the kitchen that doesn’t.

DB called and ordered it and not long afterwards, they sent a cardboard box inside a large, inpenatrable envelope made of some Spanx-like material.  Although a box of that size from Amazon would have been ripped open in the entry hall, this one sat unopened  for three months.

Oh, speaking of Amazon, I usually try to keep a few of their neat, small/medium boxes on hand for mailing packages.  DB,  promptly puts them in the recycling bin.  Thus, when I made cookies to send to friends last week, there was no box available. . . until I spotted the doohickey box.  Perfect size!

By then, DB had opened the box, but hadn’t done anything with the contents, so I dumped everything onto a countertop and mailed off the cookies in the box.

Having the pieces lying there may have inspired him to speed up the process, or maybe he’d planned to do it all along, but DB moved them all to the kitchen island and set about the task of connecting, even going so far as to read the instructions.

That TV is not an easy one to reach because it’s on a shelf above the ovens.    DB spent most of the day mumbling to himself as he fiddled with it, hanging it off the shelf in various precarious positions to get to the back of it with his growing assortment of tools.   No service.

The Doohickey
                           The Doohickey

The next day, he went over his work a second time.  At some point, he came upon an instruction that read something like,  If you’ve gotten this far and it isn’t working, call us.

Hell, for my husband, is a tossup between holding and painting.  That day was pretty bad because periodically I’d hear him muttering, “I hate having to hold.”

Don’t we all, Babe.

Finally, he was told that NOW it would work, just give it time to set itself.

For the next two days, he’d go into the kitchen to check that blank grey screen “resetting” itself.  Long after all my watched pots had boiled, the screen continued to hibernate.

DB went over all the steps–except for calling them–another time.  Still nothing.

That night he advised me that he was at an age that he didn’t have to dance to the cable company’s tune, he was going to do exactly what he wanted to and figure it out himself in his own time.

His “figuring” seems to be happening in glacial time.   He hasn’t touched it since.

Dear Cable Company:  your doohickey isn’t worth a toot, according to my husband.

But I must say,  the cardboard box worked perfectly.

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6 thoughts on “Boxed In

  1. Arkansas Patti

    Frustrating to say the least but you did get a good cookie box out of the deal. I never thought about it but I imagine the spouses of bloggers must always feel like they are treading on thin ice as they often become fodder for a good post.

    1. Same for kids, I suppose, but since mine never read my blog, I have clear sailing in that respect. I’ve read that Dennie the Menace and his dad had many problems because of the comic strip. Wonder if the ZiTS kid is based on a real teenager.

  2. ncmountainwoman

    My own DB is quick as a fox in folding boxes and putting them with the recycles. I have to “hide” them in the library closet if I want to save them from his obsessive recycling. On the other hand he would never think to phone any service provider. He simply tells me everything to say. His excuse? “You’re so much better at that than I am.”

  3. You mean he’s actually GOOD at recycling. . . as in, he reads the little numbers on plastics to see whether or not they’re actually recyclable? It’s possible that you may have a rare breed there.

    I’ll bet you know how you got so good at those phone calls: practice, practice, practice.

  4. At least the cable boxes are good for something. I detest our cable company. My husband would be all over the cable company box. The cable company is forever selling him packages, and they nickel and dime us to death.

  5. 1. You win for having a husband who throws away boxes rather than stockpiling them in the basement. The boxes correspond to the Leaning Tower of Visa in his office, where he has credit card receipts from the past EIGHT YEARS stacked on his desk.
    2. I win for sort of having a husband who will do stuff. That is, once he gets around to it. (“Stuff” does not include throwing away boxes.)
    3. So glad we don’t have cable any more. I just get the DVDs from the library and watch them with one click of the FF button – it takes me 30 minutes to watch a 40 minute episode with no loss of integrity. (SUbtitles help, though.)

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