Independent Incompetence

Before I go any further, I need to point out that the jerk-offs who come out to setup DirecTV are not employees of DirecTV. They are independent contractors who work for themselves. Hence, the above title.

Notice the carefully placed sticker.

If DirecTV’s business model depended on the quality of work of their installers, they would not exist. Luckily, their service is pretty good once you are up and running. I’m happy now that everything is over.

What started off as a happy move from Comcast turned into a sloppy mess. I put off writing this article because I got so pissed every time I sat down to transcribe my notes and crop pictures. Argh, even after all this time my blood pressure is rising. This install originally happened in December of 2010.
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Phatness.com is the personal blog of Mike Wille

I'm a developer with a passion for building products.

Most days, you can find me stirring the cauldron at Brilliant Chemistry.

 
 

I’ve been a Comcast subscriber since 2001. I have had Comcast at my current residence for almost 4 years, since we moved in. This December, I switched from Comcast to DirecTV. The reasons why are many. <Read on…>

 
 

After reading something like this post:

http://www.slashgear.com/apple-is-no-longer-the-nordstrom-of-tech-theyre-the-new-nordstrom-1963901/

on how great the Apple Store retail experience is, I wonder if it is just this one store that is causing me all my grief?

They dealt with things ranging from MacBook keyboard problems, iPod failures and customer service during the purchases of back to school systems. In each case Apple did not please these customers, Apple delighted them.

I do wonder now.  My experiences are nothing like that.  I long for Best Buy when I’m at the Sommerset Apple store.  Hmm…

 
 

iphoneI just participated in a customer satisfaction survey that Apple sent out. It was prompted by my purchase of a new 3GS for my wifey. They sure did open a can of worms.

The Apple Store continues to be the worst retail experience I go through. I dread going there. I have a MacBook Pro 17″ fully loaded, a Mac Pro before that. I’ve had every iPhone. The products are the best. I positively DREAD going to the Apple Store to buy them.

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If you have ever had a drink with me, (and especially since David was born, that is a lot of you…) then you probably have heard me talk about Tequila. Well, now you can get crib notes and skip listening to my lecture. Check out this website:

http://www.friday.com/bbum/2008/06/19/what-is-good-tequila/

A great read on the different types of Tequila. It even helps to explain why half of the US hates tequila… because they drank Jose Cuervo. The author goes too easy in describing Cuervo, however. There is no greater sin to happy hour than what Mr. has Cuervo committed. No other brand of cheap alcohol gives you such a terrible hangover. You can drink a 5 dollar 750 ml bottle of Vodka and feel better than you will with that carmel colored demon piss.

I tend to prefer Anejo (Aged) as opposed to Reposado (Rested) or Blanco tequila. My all time favorite tequila so far is El Tesoro’s Paradiso. Unfortunately, it is quite pricey, but it’s well worth it.

 
 
 
 

Here I was thinking I was the only one who fretted over my precious pens. Not to mention that even applies to the tablet I’m writing on.

Check this out:

http://www.randsinrepose.com/archives/2007/10/16/the_gel_dilemma.html

Other than the fact that .7 is way too thick a line, Rands is right on. I can’t believe how widespread “Pen OCD” is.

It is so bad, there are even websites devoted to spinning your pen around your thumb!

http://www.geocities.jp/thetroposphere/top.html

Even a wiki entry on pen spinning:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pen_spinning

 
 

I’m in the process of buying a new house. Unfortunately, Comcast Cable and CBCS Collection Agency are making that difficult to complete.

In January, my fiance and I start looking for a house to buy. After a fairly exhaustive search online, and only visiting a few prospects in person, we find one on Valentine’s day. Its a great house to start a family so we are excited.

Unfortunately, as the bank works its mortgage process, I find that I have a collection for $50 from Comcast Cable on my credit report. Of course, the bank complains about this and wants it fixed before we can go any further. I’m confident that the matter can be resolved quickly. You see I know what that $50 was for. It was a cable modem that was supposedly not returned when I moved out of my last apartment. Fortunately, I caught this guy almost a year ago when I moved into my current apartment. Back then I resolved it with Comcast (They found the cable modem). So why is it still on my credit report?

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I’m not one to bash Treo Smart Phones or Palm itself. I’m quite a fan actually. I’ve owned both the 650 and 700p. Unfortunately, for people who enjoy tools that are not overly complex and easy to use, Palm is going down the drain.

My 650 was fairly stable. Once in a while it would reboot for no apparent reason but it never affected what I was doing. It never happened during a phone call and was usually when I picked it up the first time and hit power.

I used to tell people to stay as far away from Windows Mobile as you can. Here’s the line I tell everyone. If my girlfriend and I were in a car accident and I was unconscious while she was awake, would she be able to pick up my Windows Mobile phone (specifically, my Verizon Wireless XV6700) and dial 911 to save my dying body? Not a chance in hell. I wouldn’t be typing this story right now.

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I’ve about f’ing had it with Verizon. Don’t even get me started on, “Can you hear me now.”

On an aside, I’ve had more dropped calls from Verizon in two weeks then in the past 6 months with Sprint. Maybe its the area I’m in, northern Detroit Metro, but Verizon has horrible service.

I cannot get email or calendar to be pushed to my phone from Doner. I could with Sprint. I’ve spent the past hour and a half trying to setup Verizon’s PC client to forward mail to my phone. (Which by the way is 13.4 times needlessly more complex the Sprint solution) I need to do this because my company doesn’t allow IMAP from the outside and they don’t support anything but blackberries, yet.

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So I just switched to verizon wireless from Sprint after NINE years!

I wouldn’t have done it, except for the fact that my employer wants everyone on Verizon.

Now I am starting to regret that. I have a Treo 700p. With Sprint, a Treo 650p. So, with Verizon I have to get the smart phone plan with data minutes. Or, whatever the hell they call it.

I’m paying an extra $45 a month more than I did with Sprint! For the exact same service! Well actually, I’m on the 1350 minutes plan with Verzion, I had 900 with Sprint. Verizon doesn’t have anything lower besides 450 minutes when you are on the Smartphone plan. But to me, its the equivalent plan. I don’t get anything extra out of the deal. And besides, The difference between 900 minutes and 1350 is not $45. They freakin rob you blind.

The coverage area I’m in really doesn’t seem to be at all better than Sprint. I get the same number of bars just about everywhere I’m at. Oh well.