I was talking to a friend on my Verizon landline. In the middle of the conversation the connection was lost. It was on my end. There was no dial tone - - nada. I picked up my Verizon Wireless phone (always a dicey operation at my house) and called my friend, but that was ok. For a while.
Then the wireless died. But in the meantime my landline signal came back. So once again I called my friend back on landline. Landline died again - no dial tone. So back to wireless. We are going on an hour of this game now. Technical problems - I understand.
We talk on my wireless. I check periodically on the landline - no dial tone. Finally we hang up on the wireless - I must say hadn't failed that whole time.
So. I check the landline. It lives. I want to know the status of phone service in my area. Is this storm related? We've had heavy rains. Is this caused by a car that decided to take out a pole? I dunno. So I check.
I discover the contact number on the verizon website. I use the word "discover" deliberately, it is not obvious. I should have at least been given a cookie for my efforts but then again I probably got a cookie. That part of the interaction is always well thought out.
I play tone tag with the automated "assistant". Finally "she" tells me the office is closed.
So... I look up the help number in the F***ing phone book. That's the one that is supposed to have all the phone numbers in it.
I call the number.
I play some more tone tag with the automated assistant.
I am placed on hold.
They seem to have an endless supply of Steely Dan.
Then I wait on hold.
Then I do a refresher. I relearn playing Mary has a little lamb on the keypad.
Then I wait.
I learned how to play "For the Good Times" on a keypad: 1 5 8 5 ## 8 58#.
It's not perfect but keypad fidelity sucks too.
All tolled I listened for 45 minutes.
They beat me.
I didn't get a person to ask what was going on with my phone service.
I didn't get a recorded message saying - "service in your area has been experiencing technical difficulties."
Whatever it was was evidently fixed because they kept me on hold for nearly an hour and I never lost the line.
One hour plus of Steely Dan.
So who wins?
Well. I have my phone back.
But now I am infinitely pissed at Verizon. And not even because of the phone outage. I can understand that.
What I can't understand is :
1 - THERE IS NO SIMPLE EASILY DISCOVERABLE STATUS help line online or in the phone book.
2 - Verizon's website SUCKS.
3 - Verizon's website SUCKS.
4 - VERIZON'S CUSTOMER SERVICE SUCKS. No I am being unfair. Verizon Customer Service may be the best in the world. I'll never know. I NEVER GOT THAT FAR. I do know their queuing algorithm or their HUMAN RESOURCING SUCKS.
Why should I have to wait an hour plus and then hang up in frustration because I NEVER GOT ANY INFORMATION ABOUT THE SERVICE STATUS IN MY AREA?
Here Verizon, this will save you easily a million bucks in consulting fees easy - I SHOULDN'T. Discount my bill.
What I really want to know is:
Why did you Verizon find it acceptable to piss me off on such a trivial matter? My landline - the phone that everyone relies on when even the electricity is out - dies and all I want to know is why. And you made me hate you for trying to ask.
After this experience I decided that it is time I found another phone service.
All I can say to Verizon is:
1 5 8 5 ## 8 58#.
Verizon, call me back ok, if you want to discuss? My number's in the book.
I just bought Kris Kristofferson's greatest hits special. It's playing on my answering machine.