Sunday, November 20, 2011

Cable Outage, Part One

Friday night, as I was scrambling to finish the revisions on my thesis, my Comcast went out. It's the second time in as many weeks that I've had a cable outage, but that's tomorrow's blog. I needed to get the thesis done and sent out and this was going to create a problem. I went out to Barnes & Noble for the wi-fi and tried to conduct business as usual.

I stayed at B & N until closing time. When I got home there was stll no internet. I called Comcast and bitched. They tried having me do the things I already tried (unplugging and plugging back in the modem) and again it didn't work. They scheduled a technician to come in Saturday afternoon.

The technician never had to show. Around 12:30 Saturday morning I looked out my window and saw a Comcast van pulling into the driveway. I went downstairs and the guy told me he's the emrgency outage guy and pretty much our whole block was out. He fopened up the cable box and began fiddling with it.

This was good -- it seemed like it might lead to the return of phone, cable and Internet. But it dawned me...

...and apparently it dawned on my landlord (who lives downstairs and has FiOS) too. He came outside.

"Excuse me, what are you doing?" my landlord said to the guy.

"The block is out," the guy said. "I'm trying to get the cable fixed."

"And you need to come out here?"


It struck me at that moment, as I watched them go back and forth, that this is Fitchburg. And if a stranger winds up wandering around behind you house, it generally isn't the cable guy. Even though he lives in the same building, I've only had a handful of interactions with him since I moved in about two months ago. Luckily he seems low-key. Given this scenario, some people would emerge from their apartment with a gun.

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