Shit Fest ’07

Starring, first, The Cable Company!

“Ma’am, can I be honest with you?”

Sure. That would be refreshing.

“I don’t think the technician is going to show up this evening.”

No? Really?

“The next available time for a technician is five days from now.”

Well, that is impossible. I am working the next seven, maybe nine, maybe 100 days in a row, so actually that will not work for me. Today or tomorrow are the only days, and you said you would make it happen, when I called you a week ago! By the way, I HATE YOU, CABLE COMPANY.

“I understand, Miss. Let me talk with my supervisor.”

Save yourself the trouble of a fake hold . Can I be blunt?

“Yes, Miss?”

See, I tried to get your service at my temporary address, but you claimed you could not “find it.” You said you would call me when you located it. Apparently, you never found it, because you never called me. Now I am trying to get basic cable at my new address, which you claim to have found, but you can’t seem to harness a technician for days and days.

“I am so sorry for the inconvenience Miss. And I am so sorry that this is how you have been introduced to our company.”

Oh, I know your company very well from my previous city, and I despise you, Mr. Cable Company. No, I do not despise you, Mr. Customer Service Answer Man working on a Sunday night. You’re fine, you hapless soul who is stuck talking to me.

Performing next, The Landlord!

“Everything is fine. Why are you so upset?”

Because nothing is fine at all. The back half of the apartment is in the dark with no electricity, there is no hot water, the bathroom floor was covered in water this morning, and you always put my calls to voice mail when my number appears on your caller ID. Do you know how I feel about the Cable Company? I feel that way about you, too.

“Si, but I will fix it. The electrician is there right now, si?”

No, you fucking idiot, he is not. No, you fucking liar, no one is here as you said they would be between 8 and 9 and now I have to take an entire day off to get everything fucking fixed because you are a moron and you think I am, too. Guess what, pal? I am no moron.

Enter a “mediator” with a work crew.

“You must have scared him, because he called me to make things right.”

Great. The Enforcer is at my door. Or, is it the Good Cop? Oops, shouldn’t say cop. Who knows what the hell my landlord is into with all his “spare” cash.

“I am on your side. Call me anytime. We will fix it all today.”

Thank you sooooooo much!

But I get this. He is the Good Cop, also known as The Enforcer, so I have to pretend to be stupid and then be fake nice to him. My very real threat to take legal action apparently scared my stupid landlord, who ordered up The Enforcer. For God’s sake, can we just have a moment, here? An actual honest moment to produce an apartment that is as habitable as it is cute? Oh right, I’m not in D.C. anymore. Deal with it, chica. This is as good as it gets.

Up next, The Phone Company!

The transfer was scheduled for Monday. You turned it off on Friday. The Cable Company called my landline on Sunday, which you had turned off. So they no showed and blamed me. I blame you–I blame you for everything in my life, because that’s just how I feel.

Wait, a technician just pulled up. He is younger than both my kids and adorable in a kid way. He is willing to spend hours in my barely habitable apartment in order to find “the kinked line that whoever did the rehab on this place, ruined.” I like an honest kid. I like this kid. I offer him a cola or ginger ale or diet soda. He accepts nothing. In the end, he gets one phone jack working to carry my DSL signal without constant “bleeding.”

“But, do you like Panera? Will you still go there?”

Hey cute, adorable, young kid: Are you fucking kidding? I’m good with the one jack working, okay? Thanks. Bye.

Headliner: The GM!

So, I have a new hot water heater, but no hot water for three hours, they tell me.

“That’s good, yes?”

Well, I don’t know. I can come to work with dirty hair and be fine, or I can stay here and drink wine until the hot water comes on, or doesn’t.

“Stay home, relax, and come by the restaurant and get a bottle of wine if you don’t have one.”

I have two bottles. I will be fine. Thank you.

Unexpected Encore, My Movers

I know you are in Florida this week. I had your card in my hand and was fully prepared to dial your number and ask you to come pack up my crap and haul it to anywhere you damn well pleased, except here.

Then RG Daughter called.

“So, is the apartment any better? I can’t wait to see you. And go to the beach.”

Hopefully the hot water will work in both bathrooms, not just one, and maybe even in the kitchen. Can’t wait to see you, too!

This through tears I am too tired, too spent to cry.


Tickets on sale now.






13 responses to “Shit Fest ’07”

  1. sarah Avatar

    Hi RG, just wanted to say I feel your pain. I recently “started over” as well, moving from Chicago to Seattle, and I have a little advice – forget the cable, go for Netflix or that new Blockbuster program. For local news, your basic networks, etc., get some rabbit ears. Works great. Also, forgo the land line, and just use your cell phone. Living alone, it’s not like you would ever need to share the phone, and the cell phone is usually much cheaper.
    Best of luck to you RG. Hang in there, it really does get better. I’ve been in Seattle for almost 6 months now, and I only started really feeling at home a month ago. It’s just one of those things you have to put your head down and push through. It’s the best feeling in the world feeling like you’ve conquered a new city on your own. It will come. In the meantime, I recommend lots of wine. ๐Ÿ™‚

  2. Molly Bloom Avatar
    Molly Bloom

    hang in there RG! u can do it!!! if you can work in a restaurant you can do anything! (from one restaurant worker to another…)

  3. Katie Avatar

    Are you sure you didn’t move to MN into my complex? I swear we have the same landlord.

    I have hot water issues about once every 2 months. No fun!

  4. Kim Ayres Avatar

    But what was the alternative – you move to Florida, find a nice apartment where everything works – and end up with nothing to blog about…

    (I duck to try and avoid the pan flying towards my head)

  5. amsNYC Avatar

    hang in there RG – in 6 months it will all seem much funnier. In 3 years it will be a very funny story, and someday it will all be hysterical in retrospect. In the meantime sending you good thoughts.

  6. Julie Avatar

    I hated my cable company in New York. It was always at least 3 days before they could come repair. I think we waited three weeks to get our service upgraded to include cable TV — and we had three scheduled appointments They ‘no showed’ for the first two. I called and complained the first time. No one had ever pushed me to the edge until the cable company. (I have a different cable company in Chicago, and they’ve been pretty good for the past year.)

    I’m glad you have your working phone line and DSL! And, hot water! Nothing like a long, hot shower to wash away some of the stress. Woo hoo! Hugs to you.

  7. Joe Avatar

    If you have DSL why hassle with cable? Go with Dish Network! I had them and was then suckered into a promo by my cable company. The cable technology is way behind dish or direct tv… Everything from the guide feature to the quality of the HD picture. Oh and Dish was cheaper in the long run…

  8. Jennifer Avatar

    RG, I feel your pain as well. You ARE going to get through this and things ARE going to work out.

    Meantime, I’d like to date your GM if he’s available. ๐Ÿ˜‰

  9. kgrrrl Avatar

    sounds like my first week when I moved away. I spent 2 hours on hold at a payphone trying to get my phone hooked up since I’m now a 14 hour drive away from home and missing it. I had NO cable until my dear roommate and I could figure out a way for BOTH of us to take turns between the god-aweful hours that we were given (has anyone heard of work???).
    Good luck! Once everything is fixed, you’ll love life and forget about any of this… until you read your blog ๐Ÿ™‚

  10. Ex-Restaurant Manager Avatar

    As much as I dislike Senator Torricelli (R) Colorado, he did kinda hit the spot referring to South Florida as a third world country. It definately is a different world down there! I still stand by “Belly of the Beast”, as you’ve so eloquently described.

  11. question girl Avatar

    RG — it WILL WORK OUT it WILL work out it will WORK OUT… i keep saying that litany, stressing those 4 words different,y, as i try to convince myself….

    my 1st apt alone, @ 4 times a year i had to threaten my landlord w/ putting my rent into escrow to get him to do anything and he always came back w/ the “really, i didn’t know that” w/ how to fix it because he didn’t know how to do ANYTHING…

    i reported him to tha housing authority once a year also…

    i survived him for 5 years because it was a great space for a phenominal price….

    i only moved because the side of the building was about to fall off one spring….


    and since your new GM is willing to work w/ you, take it one day at a time…..

  12. 6th Floor Blogger Avatar

    rough couple of weeks eh? Here’s a tidbit, if you dial *67 before you call your landlord it’ll come up restricted on the ID. he might not pick up anyway, but at least he won’t know it’s you ๐Ÿ˜‰

  13. theduckthief Avatar

    Hi. I’ve been lurking here for a few months and now I feel pressed to comment. I completely understand what you’re going through. While I haven’t experienced anything near to the extent that you have, I do know the frustration of trying to get everything hooked up and working in a new place.

    You have my sympathies. My advice would be to treat yourself to ice cream, chocolate, movies, anything to take your mind off of things for a while. A little escapism can go a long way. I hope things work out soon.